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All jacked up! Ridge police pledge response to tire-and-rim thefts

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They’re rolling out.

Top brass at the 68th precinct are sending out more plainclothes officers in response to a recent rash of rim-and-tire thefts in Bay Ridge. Nogoodniks have left 20 cars on cinder blocks this year — twice as many as this time last year, officials said. Crooks are targeting Japanese cars along Shore Road — and that’s where officers will focus their efforts, the precinct’s new top cop said.

“Hondas are the top target,” said Captain Joseph Hayward, who took over the command on March 3. “We have our anti-crime team out in unmarked cars doing surveillance of the area.”

Thieves targeted Hondas in 11 of this year’s 20 thefts — and nine of those were from Honda’s CR-V models alone, Hayward said.

He suspects bandits are targeting the make for its stock rims are worth a pretty penny, according to the commanding officer who himself drives a Honda.

Such thefts are up across Southern Brooklyn, but cops know exactly what they are looking for, according to Hayward.

“They use these big 12-passenger vans so that’s what we target at night if we see them driving through a residential block,” Hayward said. “You just gotta get them.”

Bay Ridgites have noticed the uptick, too. Many are circulating photos on social media of victims’ cars teetering on concrete blocks, and the local community board office has gotten more calls lately reporting the crime, according to district manager Josephine Beckmann.

A neighborhood biker posted a photo to Facebook on Feb. 7 of a victimized car parked right outside an apartment building entrance on Shore Road near 92nd Street. The next day a woman posted a photo of her sister’s specialized handicapped van “off Shore Road” missing two sets of tires and rims.

A single tire and rim set can set a car owner back about $500 — and thieves trained to jack them can get in and out with their ill-gotten goods “in a minute,” a spokesman for the American Automobile Association told CBS News. Officials are classifying many of the thefts reported as grand larcenies — punishable by up to a four years in prison — because the ripped-off rims were worth more than $1,000, police said.

Officers are suggesting drivers replace wheel lug nuts with locking, anti-theft lug nuts, which require a special tool to remove. But the locking nuts are not a guaranteed deterrent, so car owners should be smart about where they park their rides, Hayward said.

“If they really want to get them off they can — seeing the locking nuts is not necessarily going to stop them,” he said. “You can park in more well-lit areas, put lights in front of your house — and installing video cameras is always a good thing.”

Reach reporter Dennis Lynch at (718) 260–2508 or e-mail him at dlynch@cnglocal.com.
Updated 10:17 pm, July 9, 2018
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Reasonable discourse

Mike from Williamsburg says:
Crime is wrong, obviously. But maybe don't store your valuables in the street?
March 10, 2016, 8:31 am
Me from Bay Ridge says:
Mike. Sigh.....
March 10, 2016, 9:38 am
MJ from Bay Ridge says:
more effective is a sting operation by the police to park a vulnerable vechicle on Shore Road and monitor it 24/7.
March 10, 2016, 10:44 am
Me from Greenpoint says:
'stock' rims Mike.
March 10, 2016, 1:47 pm
John from Bay Ridge says:
I am aware of one incident that occurred between Ridge and Colonial a month ago. The detective from the 68th Precinct was informed that one homeowner had video of the theft and the vehicle (silver Chevy SUV) that the thieves used. It took the 68 almost a week to collect that video.
March 10, 2016, 1:53 pm
Fred from Bay Ridge says:
The 68 has a lot of lazy patrol officers, especially on the late shift. Hayward needs to shake that place up. he can start by visiting the "cooping" spots that the late shift uses to sleep through part of their tour. The end of 82nd off Shore Road; behind Ft Hamilton HS, near the dumpsters; and the park drive off Shore near the bridge. To name just a few.
March 10, 2016, 1:57 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
I won't be surprised if the person(s) who is stealing the tires and rims might be members of Transportation Alternatives.
March 10, 2016, 4:03 pm
Ken from Greenpoint says:
Tal.

you are damn right....
March 10, 2016, 4:09 pm
LABJ from Bay Ridge says:
Once again police work is made public. Now the thieves will target another area in Bay Ridge for awhile. Why is the public made privy to the plan?
March 10, 2016, 7:14 pm
Matt from Greenpoint says:
“If they really want to get them off they can — seeing the locking nuts is not necessarily going to stop them,” he said. “You can park in more well-lit areas, put lights in front of your house — and installing video cameras is always a good thing.”

Living on a street where everyone has spotlights directed on their auto, video surveillance, barb wire etc. sounds just great. That is how the rich live in many "third world" countries.

Why do we have the largest police force in the world again?!
March 10, 2016, 9:15 pm
ty from pps says:
its ok to store property on the street if it's a Smart Car!
March 11, 2016, 8:42 am
Jerry from BR says:
Using Tal Barzilai's logic: "I won't be surprised if the person(s) who is stealing the tires and rims might be" Tal masquerading as a member of Transportation Alternatives.

lol.
March 11, 2016, 9:32 am
K. from ArKady says:
@Matt. Yes, that is how you live in countries with a huge wealth disparity, no social safety net, and little to no economic opportunities for those outside a very small class of people.

Bonus points if you can connect this to the rise of Donald Trump ( don't cry for me, Argentina! )
March 11, 2016, 1:18 pm
Angela from BR says:
Can I park my car for free in front of the police station until they straighten this out?
March 11, 2016, 3:12 pm
Me from Bay Ridge says:
No, the cop's cars are already all over the street and sidewalks there -- and I don't mean the blue and white ones.
March 11, 2016, 4:22 pm
John from Sheepshead bay says:
As a member of the finest , the mayor is more interested in us getting trained in speed guns the. Getting the bad guys off the street . The mayor is emptying rikers and dumping the crooks on the street
March 13, 2016, 3:11 am
Concerned Citizen from Bay Ridge says:
There is no lack of parking tickets in Bay Ridge. No lack of 4 to 5 olove cars showing up for a fender bender, spending way too much time socializing w each other. How about trying to catch real criminals?
March 13, 2016, 11:54 pm
Avis Har from Bay Ridge says:
To Angela from BR, Ha, Nice one.
March 20, 2016, 12:49 pm

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