Police are dealing with a rash of car break-ins in Palm Beach Co - Fox29 WFLX TV, West Palm Beach, FL-news & weather

Police are dealing with a rash of car break-ins in Palm Beach County; nearly 100 cars burglarized

Authorities across Palm Beach County are working together to track down the thieves that targeted nearly one hundred cars around the area.

Juno Beach was hit the hardest over the weekend.


According to Chief Brian Smith of the Juno Beach Police Department, at least 35 cars were broken into at The Waterford and eight were hit at the Hampton Inn. Both businesses are located off of U.S. 1.

"It's a crime of opportunity. People leave things in their car. They don't lock their cars. They leave their keys in their car," the chief says.

The Waterford is a retirement community and assisted living facility.

Residents there are shaken up over what happened.

"We're a family here, and we're going to support each other and get through it together," says David Randazzo, regional operations manager at The Waterford.

He says the facility has security cameras in place and a security guard as well.

But the thieves were still able to break into dozens of cars early Saturday morning.

"They were trying to find anything that they could," he says.

Along with taking their valuables, he says the thieves took something that can't be replaced.

"I think a general sense of safety," David says.

At the Hampton Inn, Bob Stuke says his car was burglarized early Saturday morning.

"We had gone down to the hotel lobby to eat breakfast and heard a lot of people talking about broken windows. Right when we went to our car, we found both of our passenger windows had been broken," Bob says.

He says the thieves got away with a $50 watch and an $8 pair of sunglasses. But he says they didn't take expensive camera gear that he left inside the car.

He believes the thieves left it because it could be traced back to Bob.

The crime caused quite a hassle for Bob on his trip back home to Georgia.

"We called all of the glass places and no one could fix the vehicle and we ended up having to travel back to Atlanta, Georgia, with plastic covering two of the windows," he says.

In Jupiter, police say there were even more break-ins over the weekend.

Officials say there were at least 29 car burglaries, most of them happening in the Ocean Park Condominiums and Jupiter Bay Condominiums.

All of the crimes there also happened on Friday night and into Saturday morning, police say.

Officials with the Palm Beach County Sheriff's Office say there were even more break-ins at the airport, and the victims may not even know it yet.

Over the weekend, at least sixteen cars were broken into at Palm Beach International Airport, according to PBSO.

The cars were spotted by a deputy who was patrolling the long term parking lot.

All of the break-ins happened on the second and third floors, officials say.

Authorities urge residents not to leave anything of value in your car and to make sure you always lock your car.

"It's an unusual occurrence, but south Florida's been plagued lately by vehicle break-ins," says Chief Smith.

He says criminals are likely to strike around the holidays, as a way to bring in some extra cash.

"They're brazen, and I don't really think they're afraid of the consequences," the chief says.

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