Crime heats up as temperatures rise


VIGO COUNTY, Ind. (WTHI) – The beginning of summer means relaxation, family vacations, and lots of spare time, but not everyone out enjoying the warm temperatures has the best intentions.

“We do see an increase in outdoor theft through the summer. People bring a lot of their property that’s been stored for the winter time outdoors,” said Chief Deputy Clark Cottom, with the Vigo Co. Sheriff’s Department.

From burglaries to vandalism, the sizzling sun can bring together potential wrongdoers, victims, and belongings all in the same place.

“The more people that are out on the street in the summer months it tends to increase those types of crimes. Vandalisms are up, thefts are up, and assault and batteries tend to rise. We feel because a lot of those are crimes of opportunity,” said Cottom.

Crimes of opportunity that can be made available through social media.

Updating your status may seem harmless but you could be tipping off thieves.

“We encourage people to call into the Sheriff’s Department and ask for extra patrol of their neighborhood or home if they are going to be out of town. We would also ask that they don’t put it on social media,” said Cottom.

While law enforcement will do their part.

“We increase our patrol, especially out in the rural area, and keep an eye on folks,” said Cottom.

They also ask you to keep your eyes peeled.

“Houses are even left more un-secure in the summertime months. Windows are up, screens are open so a lot of times we will have homes that are burglarized just because it’s a little easier access.”

Chief Deputy Cottom suggests neighbors should get to know each other, share information, and always report anything suspicious.

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