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Cerritos Weekly Crime Recap: Aug. 13 to 19

Thieves often target SUVs for parts such as DVD units, wheels, and third row seats -- the Cerritos Sheriff's Station suggests that your SUV is protected by tracking devices such as GPS units, and include a steering wheel lock for an added security measure

Editor's Note: The information below comes from the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department Cerritos Station's weekly crime summary.

There were 26 Part I felony crime investigations conducted by the last week, up from 22 the previous one. Robberies, commercial burglaries and vehicle burglaries increased while residential burglaries and vehicle thefts dropped. Patrol deputies handled 2783 calls for service last week, down from 310 the week before. The 2012 weekly average in calls for service is currently 270. 

ROBBERIES

There were four robberies reported last week.

At 7:45 a.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 15 a male was approached by another at Cedarcrest Drive and Norwalk Boulevard. The suspect asked to use the victim’s cell phone and kept it.  

At 5:56 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 16 a shoplifter fought with loss prevention personnel at a retail store in the Cerritos Towne Center. The female suspect was able to flee.  

On 3:02 a.m on Friday, Aug. 17 at a male suspect grabbed the purse of a female victim in the 18900 block of Rochelle Avenue and threw her to the ground.  

The last case occurred in a fast-food restaurant at 10:20 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 17 in the 11300 block of 183rd Street. A male suspect armed with a knife robbed employees of cash. 

RESIDENTIAL BURGLARIES

Residential burglaries dropped from ten to five last week. Two of the recent cases were made possible by open/unlocked doors or windows. A sliding glass door and a window were pried open and one window was shattered. Handguns, jewelry and TVs were reported missing. The 2012 weekly average in residential burglaries is now 4.6. 

Sheriff's safety tip: It is very difficult to pry open a window that is equipped with security devices, such as locking pins. Hardware that holds the windows tightly against the frame will inhibit the movement necessary to force the window open.

COMMERCIAL/OTHER STRUCTURE BURGLARIES

Three commercial burglaries were reported last week. There were none the week before. One suspect is in custody after stealing property from a locker. A restaurant was targeted twice last week where computer parts and boxes of dried shark fins were taken. The 2012 weekly average in “other structure”/commercial burglaries is 1.9.

VEHICLE BURGLARIES

Vehicle burglaries increased from four to five. Four break-ins took place in high-volume commercial parking lots. Three of the vandalized vehicles were SUVs. Tools, a backpack, MP3 players, ID, cell phones and a stereo system were stolen. The 2012 weekly average in vehicle burglaries is 7.5. 

Sheriff's safety tip: Thieves are attracted to items that they can see and rarely break into a vehicle just to “look around”. Are there visible items of value in your vehicle when you park it? Also, remember that SUVs, vans, and pick-ups do not have trunk space to secure these valuables. Thieves know that and take advantage of careless victims.

VEHICLE THEFTS

Vehicle thefts dropped from four to two last week. One was from a high-volume commercial parking lot. An SUV and a VW were stolen. The new 2012 weekly average in vehicle thefts is now 3.2. 

Sheriff's safety tip: SUVs are often taken for parts such as DVD units, wheels, and third row seats. If you own one, make sure that your investment is protected by tracking devices such as GPS units, and include a steering wheel lock just for an added measure of security.  

 * Visit www.safercerritos.com for an extensive library of crime prevention tips, disaster preparedness information, and a variety of links to other pertinent sites.

Volunteers on Patrol Wanted 

The Cerritos Sheriff’s Station is seeking Volunteers on Patrol (VOPs). Patrolling the city in distinctly marked vehicles, VOPs assist with crime suppression, traffic control, vacation checks, special events and park security checks. They serve as additional “eyes and ears” for the Sheriff’s Department and train as first responders in the event of a major emergency or disaster. If you are interested in helping Cerritos maintain its reputation as a safe place to live and work, the Cerritos Sheriff’s Station encourages you to apply to be a VOP.  

For more information, contact the Cerritos Sheriff’s Station at (562) 860-0044, or visit the Cerritos Sheriff’s Station to obtain an application.  

Block Captains Wanted 

Block Captains act as contacts for the Sheriff’s Department and the Community Safety Division on behalf of their neighbors.  They are also responsible for distributing information and do a great deal to promote public safety in Cerritos. Remember, informed citizens who use safe living strategies are safer citizens!  We encourage residents, business owners, and their employees to consider joining the Virtual Block Club (VBC). If you are interested in helping our Sheriff’s Department prevent and reduce crime, and enhancing your own personal and neighborhood safety, join the VBC on-line at our website devoted to public safety in the City of Cerritos. We encourage you to share the information with your family, friends, and co-workers. Go to www.safercerritos.com to sign up. 

If you are interested in becoming a Block Captain in the Cerritos Neighborhood Watch, contact the Community Safety office at (562) 916-1266.

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