Property thefts on the rise

Published 4:30 pm Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Bainbridge Public Safety and the Decatur County Sheriff’s Office have received a number of reports of personal property being stolen from cars and houses in recent months, and the trend is on the rise elsewhere, too.

There are several easy ways by which people can protect themselves from losing their property due to crimes such as burglary, theft and larceny, according to police and insurance companies:

 Lock the doors of your vehicles and roll up the windows when you go inside the house; and don’t leave anything of value in plain sight within the car. Instead, consider moving valuables to the glove box, trunk or a secured tool box or cargo area.

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 Park in well-lit, high-traffic areas. Thieves are more likely to break into vehicles when they think they won’t be likely to be seen by other people.

 Consider installing an alarm system for your vehicle if it doesn’t already have one. Custom-installed stereos should have removable faceplates to discourage their theft.

Don’t leave valuable items outdoors. Secure them in locked buildings or behind locked fences or gates.

Record model and serial number information for valuable items and keep the paperwork in a safe place.

Take photographs of property and keep a property inventory.

 When valuables go missing, contact law enforcement as soon as possible once it’s determined they haven’t been accidentally misplaced. Often thieves quickly re-sell stolen items to pawn shops. If police are familiar with what has been reported stolen and have a picture of it, they have a better chance of spotting the item if they come across it while on patrol or during investigation into other thefts.

To contact the Sheriff’s Office, call 248-3044; for Bainbridge Public Safety, call 248-2038.

Adults, teens arrested after street fight

Several adults and teenage girls were arrested and charged with disorderly conduct after Bainbridge Public Safety officers broke up a large fight in central Bainbridge.

Shortly after 6 p.m. last Friday, BPS officers responded to the intersection of Sims and Water streets after 911 calls were received regarding a fight. Upon his arrival, Cpl. Aaron Brown observed a large group of people standing on both sides of the road, and a group of girls yelling and fussing at each other.

BPS Chief Larry Funderburke also responded and told Cpl. Brown to arrest two teens, 19-year-old Joan English of 1625 Mitchell St. and 18-year-old Takeira Chukes of 851 MLK Jr. Drive, for disorderly conduct.

One group teenage girls reported they were walking past a residence when another group began calling them names. A fight ensued, and the mother of one of the girls, 32-year-old Sonja Smart of 206 N. Sims St., tried to break it up in order to protect her daughter.

Smart was also arrested for disorderly conduct.

Capt. Jack Bunting arrested Gayle Tameka Jones, 31, of 911 Monroe St., a relative of one of the girls involved in the fight, after she became loud and argumentative while at Public Safety headquarters. Juvenile complaints were filed on the seven girls involved in the fight who were younger than 17.