YORK COUNTY, S.C. A new effort to crack down on car break-ins in York County targets car owners themselves and the growing problem of drivers leaving their vehicles unlocked.
Sheriff Bruce Bryant says 76-percent of car break-in victims left their doors unlocked, which offers quick and easy pickings for crooks looking to steal car stereos, GPS units, purses, wallets, papers and whatever else people keep inside their vehicles.
It's sad when we're not able to get these items back for people and they are upset because they lost that valuable, Bryant said.
All of those unlocked car break-ins are costing the Sheriff's Office time and resources.
at the Hamilton Bay Apartments and Lake Wylie Woods, officials said
It tied up three deputies, two K-9 units and two forensic crews for hours.
I feel bad for the people it did happen to, said neighbor John Gernert, who says he always locks his car. They kinda did it to themselves.
A new solution from the Sheriff's Office now includes stickers which say lock it or lose it.
The stickers aren't meant to face out for crooks to see, but instead in for drivers to see, either on the driver side window by the lock, or on the windshield where oil change reminder stickers are.
It's meant to read to the driver, so they remember to lock their car doors when they get out, said Deputy Kim Morehouse.
We want people to minimize the opportunity for people to become a victim of crime, that's what it's about, she said.
Deputies will be handing those stickers out all over the county.