Thieves steal batteries from southwest side businesses

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. - Thieves hit several southwest side businesses the past two weeks, stealing batteries from trucks and vehicles.

Monday night JL Sales, which sells used vehicles on Oliver Ave., said someone took 26 batteries from its lot and cut wires leading to the computers.

"It's extremely heartbreaking, especially for our family," owner Jayne Boudia Shoulders said.

Surveillance video from the business shows someone popping the hoods on vehicles and walking around the property. Boudia Shoulders said this isn't the first time someone has hit their lot over the past two years, and theirs isn't the only business in the area to be hit.

Police said thieves target batteries for the lead inside.

"This is a very lucrative crime that happens from time to time and it seems more or less, at least from my own personal memory, that we see this during the winter months," IMPD Sgt. Jim Gillespie said.

Last month, businesses reported thefts of batteries on the southwest side, too. But in just the past couple weeks there have been more cases.

A police report from a business hit last month on W. Raymond St. shows another report Nov. 19. Police said it was reported someone rammed the fence of the business and stole 62 semi batteries.

Another report made on Nov. 21 shows a burglary at another business, on South Somerset Ave., involving catalytic converters and truck batteries.

"There's nothing specific that indicates that all three of these cases are related but it will be looked into," Sgt. Gillespie said.

JL Sales said it's asked for a greater police presence and had already taken extra security steps.

"I mean we have alarm systems, security people, we have everything we could do except for the one night that they hit," Boudia Shoulders said.

Police said companies with large fleets of vehicles should make sure they're secure and consider on-site security. Individuals should make sure to know their neighbors and call police for any suspicious activity.

Boudia Shoulders said though they're frustrated with the crime, their business isn't going anywhere.

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