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"Daddy, [sniffle, sniffle], someone smashed Mommy's window and stole her Garmin."
My X, parks her new vehicle in an underground parking structure. It is a gated community. Apparently someone made the rounds early this morning and hit about 4-5 vehicles with their Garmins in plain view. A quick "tap" to that driver or passenger door window and they've got immediate access.
How much time would it take a person to first canvas the area, and then second, to hit those cars in sequence and make off with the goods? I figure about 10-15 minutes maximum. The process of theft about a minute. You've got to get out of there when those car alarms start going off. Someone is going to wake up and come down.
Isn't that like leaving your keys in the ignition?
Be careful out there. When you park your vehicle anywhere, either remove your valuables or place them out of sight of would be thieves. I did a bit of research when I got back home after dropping my daughter off at school. They say that leaving Portable GPS, Radar Detectors, iPods, etc. in plain view, make criminals. :o
I always have a radar detector in my car. When I pull up somewhere, I pull the detector down, but leave the mount on the windshield.
In 15 years, I've never had an issue. My wife just had the detector stolen out of her car a few months back because she always leaves it on the windshield (and turned on...nice bright beacon in the night).
Thieves generally look for the surest thing and easiest target. Leaving any type of super portable electronics just sitting on a windshield is asking for trouble.
Similarly, I uses a GPS on my bicycle. Whereas I dare to leave my bike unattended for a few minutes while I duck into a public bathroom or a grocery or convenience store (assuming I can keep eyes on the bike most of the time), I will usually unclick the GPS and slip it in my back pocket.
It's just too easy to walk bike and slip the GPS off without breaking stride or attracting attention.
But I don't always do it. And this thread has made me decide that I WILL always do it from now on.
[edited by: LifeinAsia at 4:40 pm (utc) on June 26, 2008]
Cops comment was that we should not leave things in the car in the plain sight. Ofcourse I knew that but never thought that it would happen in our own driveway....
Yeah, we set our home address on the factory-fitted sat navs to another house some way along the street. Even if the car's stolen, it'll take them some wasted time, and they might even give up.
I have a plan to call the cops and tell them to wait for our car turning up at the alternate address. lol
Wouldn't that be brilliant? Hehehe, I can imagine the first round of thefts after the feature is released and the dingbats didn't know about it. So, there they are with all their loot, they've got a bag full of Garmins, Radar Detectors, iPods, Cell Phones, you name it.
They are gathered around the campfire. All of a sudden, the bag with the Garmins starts lighting up. Hey, what's up with that? Fifteen Garmins just phoned home and the police units have triangulated your location and are in route. One moment please...
Oh, I can't wait!
"Yo dude, what are you in for?"
The stories they will be able to share and laugh at...
"I'm a Gar Thief, you too?"
Why isn't it sending out a beacon right now?
Anyone know a valid reason why the GPS unit cannot phone home? Its registered right? When you first turn it on, it needs to calculate your position, right? Isn't there some sort of registration and confirmation process?
Most GPS units are just receivers - they just receive signals and do not transmit them. There are systems (not just pure GPS units) on the market that have ability to send signals as well - like Northstar.
It would be nice if WiFi was everywhere for networked rx/tx, or better utilization of cellular (mobile) frequencies...
Not sure about you, but I have my car insurance and registration in the car at all times. If they really wanted your address there are much easier ways of obtaining it.
As for car theft...I deal and listen to the police all the time as a fire fighter. Most of car theft isn't even "breaking" into the car, but rather testing to see if the doors are left unlocked. I know it seems like an elementary thing to do -- lock your car -- but there are tons of people out there that can't even do that. The hot ticket items are cell phones, iPods, and GPS units. These three items are the most commonly stolen in this manner, and are easily pawned off.
>> Why isn't it sending out a beacon right now?
The key is not getting it stolen in the first place. ;) In any case, the police have a pretty good idea of where they might be able to find an item once it is stolen. Thieves don't like to hold onto stolen merchandise too long and pawn shops are great ways of getting rid of stuff. Odds are you'll be able to find your stolen goods at a pawn shop somewhat in your area if there is one. These types of places are also where the police find the suspect's identity as cameras are usually present at the store.