The Aiken Department of Public Safety is urging residents to put up valuable items and lock up their cars while it investigates a rash of vehicle break-ins this weekend.
Ten vehicle break-ins were reported in the City of Aiken between Friday and early Monday, including eight that were reported on Sunday, according to incident reports.
The first break-in was reported about 6:50 a.m. on Friday on Augustus Drive; a window was broken out, and a purse was missing.
Break-ins were reported on Sunday on Pebble Lane, South Boundary Avenue, Colleton Avenue, East Gate Drive, Silver Bluff Road and Roses Run. One break-in was reported early on Monday on University Parkway. Most of the incidents on Saturday were reported between 4 and 10:30 a.m., with the East Gate Drive break-in being reported about 9:45 p.m.
In nearly every incident, a window was broken out to gain access to the vehicle. A similar break-in was reported to the Aiken County Sheriff's Office on Sunday.
No arrests have been made as of Monday afternoon, according to Detective Jeremy Hembree, a spokesman for Aiken Public Safety.
“We do have some information we are following up on to determine suspects,” he said.
In addition to locking their vehicles, police are urging residents to put away their valuables, especially with the holiday shopping season officially kicking off this week.
“If they're not going to take their valuables with them … we ask them to leave them at home, so they're not sitting in plain view for thieves to see and take them,” Hembree said.
Aiken Public Safety is still investigating several vehicle break-ins reported last week at the Gold's Gym on Corporate Parkway. Hembree said investigators have begun reviewing surveillance footage of the parking lot but haven't yet received all of the footage.
Teddy Kulmala covers the crime and courts beat for the Aiken Standard and has been with the newspaper since August 2012. He is a native of Williston and majored in communication studies at Clemson University.