Vehicle Break-ins: Notes from a Repo Man

I was a repo man for 7yrs, and I spent plenty of time out trying to verify VIN numbers on cars before "stealing" them for repossession. This means breaking into the car a lot of the time. The things I hated the most when on the prowl: 1. Motion lights with short cycles, kept turning on and off attracting attention to me. 2. Dogs. 3. Car alarms 4. Owners with guns. Notice cops are not on this list? I liked: 1. Dark parking places 2. Unlocked cars 3. Neighbors who didn't care So my advice:

1. Lock your car and be sure no

valuables are visible through windows. In fact, leave trash. Make it look like it's not worth breaking into.

2. Install motion lights with short cycle times

3. Listen to your dog, their entire existence is to protect your territory

4. Set the car alarm

5. If you see someone breaking into your car, quietly call 911. Hopefully the cops will get there and arrest the creep.

While nothing will stop all vehicle break-ins, most are opportunistic. Minimize opportunity, maximize risk for the perp and they may choose another target. Garages:

Keep the garage door closed unless you are using the garage so no passers by can scope out your stuff. Put an alarm company sign in your yard, even if you don't have an alarm. Cover windows, put a light on a timer so it comes on and turns off a couple times during the night (odd times) and leave a radio on tuned to a talk radio station. If they are doing recon, keep them guessing. They might pass on your garage and choose a more certain target. Again, nothing can stop all break-ins, but making your property a "hardened" target can lessen the chances of a break-in and increase the odds that a thief will move on looking for an easier target.

Scroll to the bottom to leave a comment, and be safe out there.


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