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Organized crime from interstate targets cars in Monroe County

Authorities in Monroe County are warning of a threat of car break-ins in locations off of Interstate 75 / Eric Mock (WGXA)

FORSYTH, Ga. -- Authorities in Monroe County are warning of a threat of car break-ins in locations off of Interstate 75.

Lt. Brad Freeman with the Monroe County Sheriff's Office said that they are seeing an influx of car break-ins in areas such as the Monroe County Recreation Complex and the High Falls Waterpark as people leave their vehicles unattended.

He said that the Recreation Complex has been hit seven or eight times in the last month.

Freeman said oftentimes, people from all over will come in off of the interstate and head to areas where they know vehicles will be left unattended for some time, try the doors of the cars to see if they are unlocked and steal valuable items from inside the vehicles if they are.

He said that sometimes, these burglaries are more like "organized crime" in that those burglars are hired by others to commit the break-ins.

Freeman said that it is difficult to track these crimes because there is no real rhyme or reason to the break-ins. He also said that the perpetrators can be from anywhere because there is 35 miles of interstate in Monroe County that provides ample opportunity for out-of-towners to get into the county to steal.

An example of this, Freeman said, is that a bank card stolen from a vehicle in Monroe County was used in Laurel, Maryland.

Freeman said that it is important to not leave your belongings in your vehicle if you will be leaving it unattended in a public place. He also said that if you must leave items in your car, you should put them in your trunk where they are harder for thieves to get ti.

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