Tampa police amping up patrols to prevent Spring Break car thefts

TPD launcing car theft awareness campaign
Posted at 7:24 AM, Mar 15, 2018
and last updated 2018-03-15 07:24:53-04

TAMPA, Fla. — The Tampa Police Department is amping up patrols across the city to prevent car thefts during spring break.

"If the crime of opportunity is there and you give somebody the opportunity to take something, they're going to find it," said Major Ruben Delgado, with the department's district one office.

Delgado says spring break is a time when they can see more people fall victim to car theft. Most of the cars that get hit are unlocked, he said.

Police said when kids are off of school, some can get into trouble.

That's why they are reassigning some school resource officers to do checks on kids as well as increasing patrols in neighborhoods as well as popular tourist spots like beaches.

Dieter Hamilton was troubled to discover his car door wide open after someone came and tried stealing items from his vehicle.

"It's definitely an uneasy feeling," Hamilton said.

He said it's easy to forget to lock your car door but his family is working on making it a habit.

"It's one of those things," Hamiliton said. "It's a busy day. You've got a lot going on. You know, you can forget."

Tampa Police are now going neighborhood to neighborhood handing out a car theft prevention checklist in the morning of a refrigerator magnet in the hopes it will prompt people to keep their car doors locked.