By David Howell
WATER VALLEY – The Water Valley Police Department is investigating eight automobile burglaries that occurred in the early morning hours on July 27 in in the vicinity of West Lee Street Extended and Airways Acres Drive. In most cases it appeared that someone had hurriedly ransacked the unlocked vehicles looking for valuables.
The recent rash brings the total number of automobile burglaries to 20 since April 1 and the chief said only three were forced entries into a locked vehicle.
“I can’t stress enough how important it is to lock your vehicles and make sure you do not leave any valuables in them at night,” Hernandez reported. The items stolen typically range from personal items like a purse to cell phones and even weapons left in vehicles overnight.
“It only takes about four seconds for someone to reach into an unlocked vehicle, grab something, and be on their way,” Hernandez added. “Lock it or risk losing it,” he added. “This includes when you run into a business for a few minutes, you can’t be too careful.”
He also noted that the theft of a purse or wallet can lead to even bigger problems if the information is used for identity theft.
“If you see anything suspicious, especially someone walking in your neighborhood late at night do not hesitate to call us,” the chief added.
In addition to the automobile burglaries, Hernandez also reported his department is investigating a home burglary on Market Street reported earlier in the month. Electronic items were taken from the residence while the homeowner was out of town.
“We are working very diligently on all of these cases,” Hernandez told the Herald.
Other law enforcement news from the department includes:
• Arrested Justina Pritchard for simple domestic assault on July 19 on Eckford Street.
• Investigated the theft of a Glock pistol reported missing from a vehicle on July 22. The victim told police he was not sure when the pistol was taken from his vehicle.
• Responded to a vehicle burglary on Central Street on July 24. Hernandez reported the suspect was chased away by a neighbor.
• Investigated a utility theft on Lafayette Street reported by the Water Valley Electric Department on July 25.
• Apprehended two dogs following a complaint on Stevens Street on July 26.
• Investigated a vehicle theft on July 27 at the Valley Motel. According to the report, a black Mercury Mariner was stolen by a roommate of an occupant at the hotel.
• Arrested Robert Lee Smith for possession of marijuana in a motor vehicle at the Exxon Station on Frostland Drive. The arrest was made after a call to police that there was someone intoxicated inside the store.
• Arrested Christopher Keel for public drunk and public profanity at the Shell Station on July 27. Hernandez reported the initial call came from an off-duty Grenada police officer. He also said that Keel cursed the officer.
• Responded to a family disturbance at Rolling Hills.
• Responded to a report of malicious mischief on July 29 after a vehicle was damaged.
• Took a walk-in report at the police department for identity theft.
• Arrested Kevin Pritchard for simple assault on July 29 at the Manor Apartments.
• Responded a natural death call on Blackmur Drive on July 31.
• Worked four automobile accidents.