Stolen purses, laptops, etc., send strong message


The recent arrest of an Oakland man in connection with vehicle break-ins all throughout the San Ramon Valley may serve as a wake-up call for area residents in keeping their valuables safe.

Danville Police Chief Chris Wenzel said a traffic stop on Dec. 22, reported that week in the Danville Express, began an investigation which led to the recovery of over 125 purses, more than 400 articles of ID and credit cards, laptops, cameras and other assorted electronic devices stolen out of vehicles during the past two years.

"For Danville and the rest of the valley, property crimes are getting to be a serious problem," Wenzel said. "The items that are being stolen are usually in plain view, left on a seat or a console."

Town statistics showed that in 2009 there were 136 vehicle burglaries, up from 119 in 2008. In many cases, the items stolen were left out in plain view.

"We're a very safe city," Wenzel stated. "One of the safest in the county. We just need to be more careful in locking our cars and not leaving valuable items out in the open where they can be seen."

Wenzel added that because of the low crime rate and the easy availability of items left in autos, Danville is beginning to get a reputation among criminals. This, in turn, leads to offenders from throughout the area coming to the San Ramon Valley.

"Criminals network," Wenzel said, "and if they find an area where it's 'easy pickings,' they'll keep coming back and bringing more and more of that bad element into town."

Danville Detective Sgt. Allan Shields said that as property crimes have risen, the department has adjusted to meet the increased threat.

"We have pro-active patrols that target this specific type of crime," he explained. "We get officers out on the street and they will target areas that are seeing a lot of activity."

They are also looking at other means of combating the burglaries, such as using unmarked police vehicles and using patrol officers in late-night suppression operations. The downside is that these operations will require the use additional resources and man-hours.

Wenzel said that while they are being more aggressive in their pursuit of these would-be burglars, residents can have a great impact on the number of car burglaries just by exercising some caution.

He suggests:

1. Park in a well lit area

2. Lock all doors of the vehicle

3. Take valuable items into your home, or hide them under the seat or in the trunk

4. Be vigilant

Wenzel said exercising caution can go a long way toward curbing the tide of vehicle burglaries in the San Ramon Valley.

"I know it's inconvenient and takes a few minutes, but that's what crime prevention is all about. You want to make it difficult for the criminals to steal."

Read the original story here.


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Posted by Gunslinger
a resident of Danville
on Feb 3, 2010 at 5:41 pm

Hah! You guys make me laugh. I'm cleaning up this town.

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Posted by Gunslinger
a resident of Danville
on Feb 3, 2010 at 9:09 pm

We'll make it difficult for criminals alright. We'll send 'em a strong message, being that our leaders won't

Like this comment
Posted by Danville Mom
a resident of Danville
on Feb 4, 2010 at 6:17 am

Gunslinger. You appear to be a very negative and angry individual. I base this on your responses to this and other articles. (Your name is a bit scary as well.)
Maybe you might be happier if you relocated out of Danville since you seem to find so much at fault here. I wish you luck.

Like this comment
Posted by Julia
a resident of Alamo
on Feb 4, 2010 at 7:09 am

Hey Danville're playing right into the fools hand. He isn't negative...He isn't angry...and for heaven sakes don't declare fear with his name.

Gunslinger is just a frustrated moma's boy that likes to see his name and off the wall comments in print and most of all he likes to hear your reactions.

The police chief is correct...we in Alamo and Danville are too casual about locking our car doors and in some cases our homes. If you lived in Oakland or Richmond you would be more aware of what's going on around you.

Enjoy the day and don't give Gunslinger a second thought.

Julia from Alamo

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Posted by StephenR
a resident of Danville
on Feb 4, 2010 at 7:11 am

You don't need to worry, Danville Mom. Rick/Gunslinger is all talk. He's been making threats for some time now about how he's going to lead a revolution and clean up this lawless town. But unless they've introduced a new "Danville" mod for Halo3, I'm pretty sure he hasn't done diddly. Nor will he. Anonymous attacks are more his style.

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Posted by Gunslinger
a resident of Danville
on Feb 4, 2010 at 7:34 am

Oh, you guys are so not genuine. I'm sure a Danville Mom is going to read a story about crime then get mad at the guy saying he's gonna end it. You guys don't understand that I know the instincts of this town far too well to buy into this. So you go ahead and pretend you're getting to me. The officials of this town know damn well that I'm changing things, and that's why they're so scared

And you're so wrong that all I want to hear is reactions. I don't. I just want to say my piece and not have fools try every tactic in the book to discredit me. If I were so ineffective, then go ahead, ignore me.

You pseudo-grassroots writers are too afraid of my words being allowed to affect others. This mommas boys runnin this town.

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Posted by Ron
a resident of Danville
on Feb 4, 2010 at 7:46 am

This is nothing new. 10 years ago my truck was broken into in front of my house, O.K. the one day I didnt lock it, is when they hit. The cops told me then that Danville was known as an easy mark and the people let out of Martinez, go to Danville to make easy money. Good news is the paper boy or women - reported the suspects and they were stopped and my stuff recovered. 2 years ago, 4 A.M. I saw two guys in my area, junker of a car and you could tell they were out of place. I called the police and they would not send anyone because I didnt see them do anything. I followed them till they got on 680 and I could tell they were up to no good since they were trying to get out of the area and kept going down dead ends and realized they were being followed.
One area I notice people being careless is in the store. Next time you are there, notice how many purses are left open in the basket with the shoppers not even paying attention.

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Posted by Todd
a resident of Danville
on Feb 4, 2010 at 7:59 am

What have you done? I have seen no stories about people missing or dead bodies being discovered in dumpsters. Town leaders cannot change things - its the judges that need to send the message in this case. Days of Harry Callahan are long gone. Tell us what you are doing and maybe you will get credit for wanting to help, other than that - shut the [Portion removed due to disrespectful comment or offensive language] up.

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Posted by Alamo Resident
a resident of Alamo
on Feb 4, 2010 at 10:05 am

We all need to be more careful -- especially at this time of year. Last year I had my Tahoe stolen from my driveway and my credit cards stolen from the 24hr gym - both during the month of March.

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Posted by spcwtjd
a resident of Danville
on Feb 4, 2010 at 11:59 am

spcwtjd is a registered user.

Why is it a crime when this guy from Oakland and his buddies rob Danville residents, yet it’s not a crime when this same guy and his buddies in Washington, like U.S. Congresswoman Barbara Lee (D – Oakland), rob Danville residents via the IRS?

Similarly, police advise people to hide their valuables from thieves, so why is it a crime if you try to hide your valuables from the IRS?

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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