Credit Card Thieves Targeting Cars in Parks
Fairfax County police investigate a series of credit card thefts at Burke Lake Park, other rec centers.
Detectives are currently investigating a series of credit card thefts from vehicles parked at area parks.
Many of the incidents occurred at Burke Lake Park. However, other crimes have happened at Wakefield and South Run Recreation Center, according to a recent news release from the Fairfax County Police Department.
Detectives from the West Springfield Police District Criminal Investigation Section are working with the Financial Crimes Unit to apprehend suspects on more than two dozen related cases that have happened since Thanksgiving — the last six of which have taken place at Burke Lake Park.
Police believe the suspects are watching drivers as they prepare to exercise, then entering the vehicles — locked or unlock — and stealing cards from wallets that victims have “hidden” in the car’s console, under a seat or elsewhere.
Suspects then take the cards to stores — specifically, the Apple Store, Best Buy, Walmart and Target — and fraudulently purchase thousands of dollars’ worth of electronics.
In some cases, since only a card or two were taken from the wallets, people may not realize they’ve been victimized for several days.
Police are urging people to either keep their valuables with them or leave them at home when exercising. Police are working closely with Fairfax County Park Authority staff on the incidents. Staff have posted flyers to increase the public's awareness at several area parks.
Anyone with information is asked to contact Crime Solvers by phone at 1-866-411-TIPS/8477, e-mail at www.fairfaxcrimesolvers.org or text “TIP187” plus your message to CRIMES/274637 or call Fairfax County Police at 703-691-2131.
To see photos police provided of suspects in the case, view the media player at right.
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