Drivers advised to roll up windows

By Zirui Dang
Flapjack Chronicle

Many people park the car with windows opened in Arcata and on the Humboldt State University campus. Some say they do this because they think this is not a big deal.

Monique Garrett, a businessperson in Arcata, 39, parks her car beside an ice cream shop.

“I just left for a moment for an ice cream,” she said. “It was only a few minutes so I left the window open.”

Other people said they did not close the windows because of the weather.

“The weather is too hot. I open the windows and want the air circulation inside of car,” Scott Hilton, 42, said. “When I come back and drive it, the temperature will not be super high.”

A few people do not close the windows because they didn’t think about it.

“OH, I just forgot to do that,” A biology major student named Dan Johnson, 21, said. “I got up late this morning so I parked the car quickly and rushed to the classroom without closing the window.”

Is there any disadvantage for leaving the window open? A car is stolen in the United States every 26.4 seconds, according to the National Insurance Crime Bureau.

John Packer, a police officer with the Humboldt State University Police Department,  said it’s not a good idea to leave a vehicle open.

“We call it unsecured vehicle, which means the window could be down and the door could be opened or unlocked,”  Packer said. “In those types of situations, what we do is we attempt to secure the vehicle. … If it has a manual window, we may roll it up. If it is unlocked, we will lock it.”

However, if police know of some criminal activities that took place, things will get worse.

“We will document and trying to get hold of the registered owner,” Packer said. “We will take their license number or the license plate down. If they have a campus issued parking permit, we will call them and pull them out of their classes or wherever they might be, and let them know that something suspicious about the vehicle.”

Finally,  Packer also gave drivers a suggestion.

“Lock your car, close the windows,” he said. “If the weather is so hot or you have a dog in it, just open it two or three inches. Remember what you put in it. Do not leave your valuables visible in the car.”

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