Police warn of increase in vehicle break-ins, minor criminal mischief during holiday season

ELIZABETH TOWNSHIP, Pa. — The holiday shopping season is underway, and Elizabeth Township Police want to make sure your gifts make it under the tree — and not into the wrong hands.

“Even though the Grinch was a fictional character in a Dr. Seuss book, we also have people that don’t have the holiday spirit that may want to take advantage of somebody else,” said Chief Ken Honick.

Honick is reminding shoppers to park in well lit areas and be aware of their surroundings.

“This time of the year we see an increase in vehicle break-ins and some minor criminal mischief cases, so what we’re asking of our residents and visitors in our community is just be smart when you’re out doing that type of activity,” Honick said.

Honick notes it’s important to keep your purchases out of sight while they’re inside your car, whether you’re still at the mall or you’ve stopped on the way home to get dinner.

“It’s not uncommon for a family to go out for a big night of shopping and then not want go home and cook so they stop at one of our regional restaurants and leave all the things they purchased inside the car, maybe not take an extra second to put those bags in the trunk and it’s inviting for people who may want to take advantage of them,” said Honick.

The chief also suggests paying with a credit or debit card when you can, to avoid carrying large amounts of cash which can be stolen or dropped.

“We want to have a wonderful holiday spirit but also just be cautious and be safe while you’re out driving around enjoying many of the wonderful retail and shopping establishments here in the South Hills,” said Honick.

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