Thieves target Hancock County subdivision, steal gun from state police vehicle

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HANCOCK COUNTY, Ind. – Police in Hancock County are investigating a series of break-ins at a subdivision, including one involving an Indiana State Police vehicle.

The thefts happened in the Bristol Ridge Subdivision near Hillview Drive and West Bristol Way. At least 15 vehicles were involved, according to Indiana State Police.

One man said he had a $300 air conditioning unit stolen along with some gift cards. Another homeowner said his garage opener was missing. In another case, the thief took car wash books and loose change.

“Sure enough my husband’s car was unlocked.  The glove compartment was torn apart and stuff thrown on the seat,” said Lindsay Martin.

Martin and her husband didn’t lose anything valuable, but they did leave a note for the crooks on their driveway telling the robbers to stay away.

“You want justice for these idiots who are out stealing people’s things,” said Martin.

Just up the street from her home, an Indiana state trooper left his personal Glock handgun in his truck and the thieves smashed the window to steal the weapon.

“Unfortunately, it was lack of judgement when trooper left gun in his vehicle,” said Indiana State Police Sgt. John Perrine.  “Absolutely it’s a concern because now you have a gun in hands someone that shouldn’t have one.”

State police say the suspects took advantage of heavy fog and moisture.

“They were wiping dew off and looking inside before breaking the windows.  So that tells us hide your valuables,” said Perrine.

The crimes also reflect a trend seen in a map around Indy`s far east side. On four different days this month, more than 50 combined cases of car break-ins, thefts and vandalism have been reported.

“Unfortunately, there’s people who think instead of getting a job they think they can steal from people’s cars. We’re going to work hard to catch the people responsible, not just for the overnight crime but others in this area as well,” said Perrine.

While it’s always a good idea to lock your doors, police say the most important lesson is to not leave anything valuable in your car at night.