Burlco thieves target vehicles in restaurant lots

EVESHAM TWP., N.J. - November 22, 2011

In the last two weeks, they say at least 15 vehicles were burglarized outside restaurants like Outback Steakhouse, Carrabba's, Bonefish Grill and Champps.

The thieves are getting away with a lot of valuables.

"They're taking electronic equipment, tools, jewelry, cash and so far we estimate the value at about $10,000," said Lieutenant Walt Miller of the Evesham Township Police Department.

Some residents aren't surprised by the burglaries.

"When you go to a high end restaurant you're going to attract people with money, upscale cars and that's what they look for," said Jack Davis.

Police say the burglars are smashing side windows or punching through locks to get inside the cars.

They've released surveillance photos of a white minivan, possibly with a black stripe, that may be connected to the break-ins.

Detectives are reminding drivers not to make it easy for criminals by leaving things in plain view.

"You're opening yourself up to that happening if you're going to leave it in full view," said Jodi Bakley.

Action News spoke with other residents, who said its best to take precautions.

"I probably double check two or three times, to make sure my car is locked and I also make sure I don't leave any electronics out in the open," said Kristin Testa.

"Now I definitely make sure that I lock the door and hide it if I have anything in there. Because of this, I definitely hide it now," said Stacia Cohen.

Police say whether it's along Route 73 or anywhere else, if you go out for a bite, be sure to leave your valuables at home so the burglars don't take a bite out of you.

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