Both the Richmond Hill Police Department and the Bryan County Sheriff’s Department reported multiple rashes of auto break-in sprees in South Bryan County over the past couple of weeks.
The first spree hit on Tuesday June 16 when three cars were burglarized in the area of Greenwich Drive. Richmond Hill Police Department Major Mike Albritton said the spree is under investigation and they have some good leads.
The following day, two homes in the Casey Drive area of Richmond Hill were burglarized. On Tuesday June 23, two cars on Boyd Drive were hit.
In the county, on Friday June 26, three autos were entered in the area of Sweet Hill subdivision. BCSD Det. Mickey Sands said all three vehicles were unlocked. No arrests have been made.
"I don’t know how many articles need to be written before people wake up and realize that they need to lock their vehicles," Sands said. He encourages everyone to not only lock up, but to keep valuables either inside their residence or out of plain view.
One individual took the entering auto crime a step further on Tuesday June 30 by trying to steal a Pontiac Fiero parked in front of a Waterford Landing home.
Sands said the vehicle was unlocked with the keys on the floorboard.
"The suspect apparently did not know how to drive a straight shift," Sands said. "He cranked the vehicle up and, when he turned the ignition, the vehicle took off and ran over a garbage can and into a wooded area."
Sands said entering autos is an "ongoing problem" throughout the county and is a crime that usually goes up this time of year, when kids are out of school.
Recently, in response to an 18-car spree earlier this month on Rushing Street that was attributed to two 12-year-olds and a 17-year-old, the RHPD has taken a tougher stance on the city’s curfew ordinance. The county does not have a curfew, however.
The Richmond Hill ordinance says minors under the age of 16 are prohibited to be in public without supervision from a parent or guardian between the hours of 11 p.m. -- or midnight on Saturday -- and 6 a.m.