The city of Hattiesburg has seen a spike in auto burglaries over the past week, and most of them have had shattered windows.
More than two dozen vehicles have been burglarized across the city, including some at a fire station.
“In the past we had a lot of unlocked doors, I think the words gotten out to the public, and the public has started locking their doors and now we are starting to see a lot more broken windows,” Hattiesburg Police Department Lt. Jon Traxler said. “We have found some vehicles that had concrete, bricks, just regular rocks and other devices used to break the windows.”
On Sunday night, three vehicles had their windows broken out at the Hattiesburg Fire Station 2.
“We left to go on a call, actually a call at the Hattiesburg Police Department and when we got back to back in the station, we saw all the broken glass and our windows were knocked out,” Hattiesburg firefighter Brandon Lee said.
According to the firefighters, multiple items were stolen from the three vehicles.
“It’s kind of disheartening when you sign a ticket for your life to come to work here, to protect the people of this city and this is kind of the thanks you get for that,” Lee said. “We can’t even go on a call without our vehicles getting broken into, and people stealing property that we work hard for.”
Hattiesburg police arrested six people over the weekend, all from the Collins area.
Megan Miller, 18, and five juveniles, all were charged with possession of burglary tools.
“We did arrest some this weekend, we are still looking at them to see if we can possibly connect them to any of these specific cases,” Traxler said.
University of Southern Mississippi Police Department recorded seven auto burglaries last week at Pete Taylor Park, all with the same scenario, shattered windows.
Traxler added that these suspects could be linked to multiple cases around the city, but the department is not ruling out more suspects in the case.
Auto burglaries have been reported in the following locations:
“Again, we just want to remind everyone, to please stop leaving valuables in your vehicles, from wallets, to guns to cell phones, to anything of any value,” Traxler said.
If you have any information, contact Hattiesburg Police, or Metro Crime Stoppers at 601-582-stop.
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