Report suspicious activity in rural areas
RCMP is encouraging people to be aware of how accessible their vehicle and its content is to potential thieves. Metro News Services
Camrose RCMP are reminding county residents to be on the outlook for suspicious activity for Crime Prevention Week May 15-21.
Local rural residents have seen a sharp increase in the amount of property thefts so far this year, some of them are minor like breaking into unlocked vehicles while others are of a much more serious level of elaborate home break-ins.
“We’re seeing a lot of people being taken advantage of when they’re not home with break-and-enters and stolen vehicles,” said Cpl. Isaac Verbaas.
“We’re just encouraging people to be a little more cautious with locking their doors and taking the keys out of their vehicles. One of the big things we’re pushing is for people to report any kind of suspicious activity. Everyone knows their neighbours and who should be driving down certain county roads. When you see that strange vehicle scoping things out, we’d really like a phone call.”
In 2015 there were 38 reported thefts and in 2016 there were 60. Verbaas says the numbers are still relatively low but that sharp of an increase is concerning.
“I can’t specifically say it’s because of the economy … but that’s the feeling for sure,” said Verbaas.
Some preventative measures are easy to take. Verbaas says many vehicles are stolen or broken into because they were left unlocked.
“They’re typically not hot-wired or broken into, somebody left their keys in the vehicle and it was taken as an opportunity,” said Verbaas
Thieves are out looking for anything they can sell, including quads that are left in yards and other easy to grab big ticket items. Often times it’s just stealing fuel.
More jarring are some of the break-ins where robbers have a clearly executed plan, and that is where the vigilance of neighbours may be the most important.
“Those kind of crimes are typically planned, no one is going to clean a house out if they’re concerned about someone coming home,” said Verbaas.
The Camrose RCMP Detachment has five officers on staff and cover the north half of Camrose County.
May 8-14 Notes
Police attended a Bawlf residence in response to a neighbour dispute. Both parties were dealt with and the situation was mediated.
Camrose RCMP assisted Leduc RCMP and Bashaw RCMP in tracking and locating a stolen vehicle and apprehending the driver. A 21-year-old Red Deer male was arrested and is facing charges.
Police entered into an investigation of theft of copper wire and other items from an acreage in Camrose County. This is currently being investigated.
A white GMC truck with tinted windows was driving in and out of farm yards near the Duhamel area. It appears the occupant(s) were looking for fuel as there were a number of gas cans in the truck box. No license plate on the vehicle. Please report any suspicious vehicles to police.
Police also received six reports of traffic collisions; two reports of suspicious persons/vehicles and one false alarm.
If you have any information regarding any of the above mentioned incidents that may lead to an arrest, please contact your local RCMP Detachment at 780-672-3342 during business hours or Crime Stoppers Tips at 1-800-222-8477.