Okaloosa County Sheriff Officials Combat Vehicle Burglaries

OKALOOSA COUNTY It is a motion many of us do on a daily basis; closing, and locking our car doors.
But in the past few months, Okaloosa County Sheriff officials have been investigating scenes that say otherwise.

It may sound pretty simple, that if you leave your vehicle making sure items like your wallet or cellphones are stowed away in your purse, or put into a compartment in your car.

Then lock your car door.

However, according to Okaloosa County Sheriff officials 85 percent of these car break-ins happen because of just that.

"Simply by locking up is enough to deter crime. So it is really important that our citizens are diligent and make sure that vehicle is locked up,” said Ashley Bailey, Crime Prevention Manager for the Sheriff’s office.

Bailey says a busy lifestyle causes a lot of people to forget this simple task.

And while many personal items have been stolen out of people's cars, Bailey says there is one particular item she is concerned about.

"We have had 25 firearms stolen out of those unlocked vehicles,” she stated.

So Newschannel 7 wanted to see if drivers lock their car doors.

We followed Technical Sgt. Travoris Love, who was heading to a meeting, and we noticed he manually locked his vehicle.

When asked, he said it's something he always makes sure to do.

"I am originally from Memphis, Tennessee, and it is a great area, but it also has some not so great areas, so it is habitual if you will,” said Sgt. Love.

Sheriff's officials say they have not located any of those 25 missing firearms.


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