Lexington, SC (Paul Kirby) – Sheriff’s deputies are investigating a number of property crimes that occurred on the Wednesday before Hurricane Florence struck our coast last week. All these crimes were focused in the West Region which is based out of Gilbert and covers most of the land west of the town of Lexington. According to law enforcement, some of the areas hardest hit were around Kingston Harbor off Catawba Trail and the Wilmont area off Old Chapin Road. Most involved tampering, stealing from, or in several cases, stealing cars.
According to the sheriff’s spokesman, there were a number of car tampering incidents Wednesday night and into Thursday morning the week of the hurricane. In many of those cases, small items were stolen that could easily be picked up like wallets, cell phones, and other small electronic items. There were also three motor vehicle thefts as well. In all of the break-ins, investigators say that the cars were unlocked. The three vehicles that were stolen were unlocked with their keys inside. Since that time, one vehicle has been recovered in the Charlotte area.
The sheriff’s department has said that investigators have some leads on these cases and have been consistently working on tracking those down since these incidents were reported. Colby Gallagher, digital communications coordinator for the LCSD, said through an e-mail to The Lexington Ledger, “Much work is being done and these incidents are taken seriously.”
Over the last year, there has been a tremendous increase in these types of crimes countywide. Deputies and officers from town and city police departments have been occupied working these crimes. Most are very difficult to solve because they happen in the early morning hours when it’s very dark. Even when homes have good camera systems, it can be difficult to identify suspects because of hats and hoodies on the suspects. Many of the cases are being solved with the hep of citizens who are providing tips.
The LCSD and other agencies have pleaded with citizens all summer long to lock their vehicles and take the keys out of them. They have also reminded citizens about the perils of leaving valuables in plain sight in cars. Almost all of the instances of theft from cars involve vehicles that are left unsecured, crimes of convenience.
If you have any idea who might have been involved in any of these crimes, call Crimestoppers at 1-888-CRIME SC. You can also give tips through the Crimestoppers website at www.midlandscrimestoppers.com.