27 charges laid in case of thefts from vehicles

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March 12, 2015 8:15 AM

Two Lloydminster men are facing a total of 27 charges relating to a series of thefts from vehicles.

On Feb. 25 at around 4 a.m. police received a call regarding two men looking for unlocked vehicles near 28 Street and 67A Avenue.

“They (were) walking up to every vehicle they see pulling on the door handle to find if its locked or not,” said RCMP Const. Grant Kirzinger. “If it’s locked they’ll go on to the next vehicle, if not, they’ll just go in a rummage through the vehicle to see what they can find.”

Police arrived on the scene shortly after being alerted, and with the help of police dogs both men were tracked and arrested. Kirzinger says the pair attempted to open nearly 200 vehicles, and gained access to “over 10” unlocked vehicles, before they were caught.

Jordan Harwood, 21, and Jeremy Hampton, 18, are each facing two counts of resisting arrest, five counts of theft under $5,000 from a motor vehicle and two counts of mischief under $5,000. Harwood also faces five counts of fail to comply with conditions, while Hampton is also facing two youth-related charges.

Police went door-to-door in the area of the auto thefts and left forms to be filled out asking homeowners if anything was missing or stolen from their vehicles. Kirzinger says the response from residents was helpful in their investigation.

“The response from the public was very good,” he said. “We appreciate the assistance that we received and information regarding items that were taken or vehicles that were checked and entered. We want to thank the public for their help.”

Police advise that people should always take their valuables with them when leaving their vehicles. It is also prudent to make sure that all belongings are safely stowed away.

“Always lock your doors. If you are unable to remove valuables, make sure that they’re out of sight,” Kirzinger said.

The two men are due to appear in Alberta provincial court on March 13.

For the month of March, the Lloydminster RCMP will be focusing on seatbelt enforcement. In a news release, the RCMP said seatbelts are a vital part of personal safety inside a motor vehicle and failing to wear a seatbelt could cost you your life. The fine for failing to wear a seatbelt in Alberta is $115 and is $175 in Saskatchewan.

“Enforcement is one aspect of the occupant restraints initiative for this month,” said Const. Grant Kirzinger. “The other is awareness and education. The Lloydminster RCMP would like to remind the public to fasten their seatbelts this month and make a habit of it in the future.”

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