Reporting Rachel Slavik
PLYMOUTH, Minn. (WCCO) — A warning for parents who drop their kids off at day care: In the short time it takes to bring your child from the car to the building, thieves can steal the valuables from your vehicle.
In the past week, three different daycares in Plymouth have reported vehicle break-ins. Many times parents lock their car, but that’s not enough to keep yourself from being a victim.
“They smashed the window, jumped in back seat and out, within a minute,” said Shelby Aarseth, whose vehicle was broken into on Tuesday.
When Aarseth picked up her van from the body shop Thursday afternoon, it no longer showed any sign of the Tuesday morning break-in. For her, the damage is now more emotional.
“It’s very disturbing. You’re always thinking someone’s watching you,” she said.
The theft happened at a place where she takes her child every day: A New Horizon day care center in Plymouth.
“They prey on parents at day cares,” she said.
Aarseth lost her purse and laptop. She’s now a victim of a trend in vehicle break-ins.
“He drove up, smash, gone,” said Aarseth.
As parents drop off or pick up their kids for the day, thieves know many times there are valuables in the vehicle.
“I left my purse in the car, because I was dropping her off, running in and my purse was gone,” said Katie Evenson, whose purse was stolen from her vehicle at KinderCare.
Evenson also fell victim to the false sense of security in her daughter’s day care parking lot.
“When I called police, they said this is the number one place people watch for people to leave their car,” said Evenson.
Prevention is an extra step for already busy parents.
“You take it in. Everywhere you go, take the purse. Take the laptop,” Evenson said. “It’s a huge inconvenience to someone who’s the innocent party in this.”
For Aarseth having a peace of mind is worth the inconvenience.
Both mothers said the day cares are very safe places to bring their children. They just want other parents to know about the risk for theft in the parking lot.
So far police have not made any arrests, but do have surveillance video that may help with the investigation.