SAN JOSE (KRON) — There will be extra patrols at Eastridge and other area shopping malls in San Jose this weekend which tend to be fertile ground for thieves to prey upon busy and sometimes distracted holiday shoppers, according to San Jose Police Sergeant Christian Camarillo.
“We’re going to be highly visible,” he said. “Obviously , just as we’re looking for these thieves, they’re on the lookout to see if police are present, and more than likely if we are, and they see patrol cars in the area, hopefully that will deter them from doing what they’re trying to do.”
Inside the mall, as part of new, $750,000 state-funded outreach effort called “Remove It or Lose It,” free candy sweetened a reminder to shoppers about what not to do before entering the mall.
It was a message well received.
“I put all my things in the trunk and lock it up,” said one shopper.
Eastridge too has stepped up patrols and beefed up security to keep shoppers and their cars safe.
“This season especially, people are just looking for easy opportunities . The incidents we see are guests being busy, a lot on their mind and leaving their vehicles unlocked with shopping bags in the back seat,” said Rah Rily with the Eastridge Mall.
Police say thieves often watch for people stashing bags in their car before going back inside.
Leave nothing in view is the safest bet, police say.
“Don’t leave anything visible even if you think it’s insignificant,” Camarillo said. “These thieves, all they’re going to see is a shopping bag. It could be empty. They’re going to smash that window and they’re going to grab it.”