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Tis the season to prevent holiday property crimes

crime and safety

GOLETA, Calif. -- Locking up doesn't always keep criminals away during the holidays, but crime victims believe it helps

Fernando Garcia said he had holiday presents stolen when he left them in his car awhile back.

He left presents in his car overnight.

"Unfortunately the next day, I woke up to a mess of glass throughout the street and my items stolen."

University of California, Santa Barbara students said they have seen classmates forget to lock their doors and windows in Isla Vista.

They said recent crime is a reminder to lock up homes and cars.

"That's kind of asking to get your stuff stolen especially in IV, " said Vivian Lai.

Some criminals shop for opportunities like people shop for presents.

Nationwide, December is a month known for a 22 percent spike in larceny or property crimes.

Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Office didn't share any recent local statistics but they do have advice.

Public Information Officer Raquel Zick said, "I think the overarching theme is being aware of falling into a false sense of security, especially when you have valuable items in your care, carefully selected gifts. Let's be careful not to lose those things by becoming a victim."

Safety measures such as locking doors and windows reduces crime and crime statistics.

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Tracy Lehr

Tracy Lehr is a reporter and the weekend anchor for News Channel 3-12. To learn more about Tracy, click here


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