Park Cities residents have an awful time remembering to lock their car doors, which is a boon for thieves.

Park Cities residents have an awful time remembering to lock their car doors, which is a boon for thieves.

Stop me if you’ve heard this before, but police in the Park Cities largely filled their time last week with two types of incidents: burglars breaking into SUVs to steal third-row seats, and thieves helping themselves to all of the loot that Parkies leave inside their unlocked vehicles.

The 3900 and 4000 blocks of Miramar Avenue were ripe for the picking on the evening on Oct. 27. At one house, a thief stole a $3,500 diamond-and-gold bracelet and a credit card after rummaging through a purse left inside a silver 2007 Lincoln Navigator. The victim said this was the second time her vehicle has been burglarized at her home; she admitted that she’d left it unlocked both times.

Such behavior is common in her ’hood. That same night, thieves stole two packages of Apple software and a pair of women’s running shoes from a silver 2014 Land Rover, and $12 in cash from a white 2013 Mercedes. Neither vehicle was locked.

Click through for a roundup of last week’s other residential crimes in the Park Cities:

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pistol muzzle close up

We’re starting off with something really scary this week. At 12:19 p.m. on Sept. 30, a resident of the 2800 block of Amherst Street took her recycling to the alley and was startled to find a stranger there. The man said nothing to her, but he pointed a pistol in her direction. The woman fled, and she heard one shot being fired as she ran away. Police checked the area, but they could not find anyone matching the victim’s vague description of the shooter: a black male.

That’s something you certainly don’t expect to hear about – much less experience – in the Park Cities. This next bit of detective work from the same day sounds absolutely harmless by comparison.

At 9:09 p.m. on Sept. 30, police stopped a 48-year-old pedestrian named Daniel Alvarez in the 3500 block of Beverly Drive. But they had no evidence that he had committed a crime, so they let him go.

However, when officers spotted him again just before midnight in the 4700 block of Preston Road, Alvarez had allegedly acquired several items, including a set of jumper cables, two black cases holding CDs and DVDs, a red Boston Red Sox cap, and a blue Dallas Mavericks cap. Finding this accumulation of possessions odd, officers decided to arrest him on the charge of “pedestrian in the roadway.”

Let’s fast forward to 5:25 the next morning, when an officer noticed that the driver’s door on a white 2011 Chevy Tahoe was standing open in the 3200 block of St. Johns Drive. An inventory by the vehicle’s owner revealed that the following items were missing: 10 souvenir key chains, a plastic bag containing $6 worth of change, a lugnut lock key, a set of jumper cables, and a black case holding several CDs and DVDs.

Five hours later, a resident of the 4700 block of Abbott Avenue discovered that a burglar had entered her red 2008 Toyota Yaris and stolen a plastic bag containing $100 worth of makeup, a black case holding CDs and DVDs, a red Red Sox cap, and a blue Mavericks cap.

Alvarez is a suspect in both burglaries, as well as a third in the 3400 block of St. Johns Drive, where a white 2013 Ford Expedition was rifled through, but the victim could not say for sure what was stolen. He is not listed as a suspect in this next crime, but he probably should be.

At 11 p.m. on Sept. 30, a resident of the 3600 block of Beverly Drive heard a strange noise when he used his electronic key to try to lock his black 2010 Mercedes S550. He later realized the noise was due to another electronic key being inside the car, which prevented the doors from locking. By the time the resident entered his car at 7 the next morning, a thief had helped himself to a $500 Samsung phone, the aforementioned $300 electronic key, a $120 pair of Bose headphones, $15 in cash, and a VIP parking pass for AT&T Stadium.

Click through for a roundup of other residential crimes in the Park Cities:

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The short length of Potomac was a hotbed of criminal activity last week. Several property crimes occurred on this street and to the north on Milton.

The short length of Potomac was a hotbed of criminal activity last week. Several property crimes occurred on this street and to the north on Milton.

The evening of Sept. 14 was a busy one for criminal activity on Potomac Avenue in Highland Park and Milton Avenue in University Park. And there was one particular set of incidents that linked those two streets.

After 9:30 p.m., a burglar rummaged through two vehicles – a black 2012 Mercedes GL450 and a blue 1999 Ford Explorer – that had been left unlocked outside a house in the 3900 block of Potomac Avenue. Nothing was reported stolen from the Explorer, but the burglar took a case of Winchester shotgun shells from the Mercedes, as well as a key to a blue 2010 Volvo S90 that had been parked outside the same house.

The Volvo was found in the 2600 block of Milton Avenue, where it had been backed into a detached garage. A silver 2011 Jeep Wrangler that had been parked in that same garage was stolen, as were a $1,600 set of Taylor Made golf clubs, two $200 pairs of Maui Jim sunglasses, and a $200 Husky compressor.

These were just two of several crimes reported that night on Potomac and Milton:

After 4 p.m., a burglar stole $4,768 worth of property from a black 2007 BMW X3 in the 3200 block of Milton Avenue, including a $900 pair of boots, a $400 jacket, and a $600 stroller.

After 4:30 p.m., a burglar opened a black 2002 Lexus SUV that had been left unlocked in the 3600 block of Potomac Avenue and removed a beige bag. The bag contained nothing but DVDs of children’s movies, and we assume that the burglar was disappointed by its contents, because the bag and DVDs were found in the 3800 block of Potomac Avenue at 6 a.m. on Sept. 15.

After 9 p.m., a burglar rummaged through a white 2011 Volkswagen Jetta in the 3800 block of Potomac Avenue. Nothing was reported stolen. The victim believes she had locked her car, but there were no signs of forced entry.

After 9 p.m., a burglar stole $300 worth of tools and a $200 iPod Nano from a black 2009 GMC Yukon that had been left unlocked in the 3000 block of Milton Avenue.

At 9:28 a.m. on Sept. 15, a woman wearing nurse’s scrubs knocked on a door in the 3600 block of Potomac Avenue and told the homeowner that she’d found a rolling file case in the driveway. The case contained documents related to a North Dallas couple’s divorce. Police contacted the law firm responsible for the documents, and a staffer was dispatched to retrieve them. No one with the law firm could explain how the case got to the driveway on Potomac, and the identity of the medically garbed Good Samaritan remains a mystery.

Click through for last week’s Park Cities burglaries that didn’t happen on Milton or Potomac:

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Window Air Conditioner

Does that window air-conditioning unit make you an easy target for burglars?

Well, the new version of the Dallas Police Department’s incident reports are sorely lacking in interesting information. For example, we can tell you that a burglar entered a house in the 5900 block of Revere Place, just a few blocks south of Stonewall Jackson Elementary, “through the doggy door” on Aug. 18, but we can’t tell you what he stole. And on the same day, not so far away, a burglar entered a house in the 6200 block of Velasco Avenue by removing an air-conditioning unit from a window. But there are no details on the loot, which is often the most interesting part.

Luckily, we still have the two Park Cities police departments to give us the scoop on incidents such as this: Between 11 p.m. on Aug. 22 and 9:30 a.m. on Aug. 23, a burglar entered a black 2014 Range Rover that had been left unlocked in the 3800 block of Miramar Avenue and stole a Louis Vuitton wallet — which held $150 in cash and seven credit cards — from a purse. (The victim said she always leaves her purse behind the front seat, for whatever reason.) But the burglar ignored (or didn’t notice) a bank envelope in the same purse that held several hundred dollars in cash. He did, however, take a blue iPod Mini, a white first-generation iPod, and a charger from the console. Poor choices on the part of both the victim and the criminal here.

Click through to read our crime report covering the Park Cities.

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Maybe it's time for more bulletproof glass and armor plating in Highland Park? (Photo: Conquest Vehicles)

Maybe it’s time for more bulletproof glass and armor plating in Highland Park? (Photo: Conquest Vehicles)

Well, the Dallas Police Department has restored the public’s access to online incident reports. However, the juicy narratives are missing from said reports; the cops say they’re still working out the kinks. Based on how this has gone so far, look for things to be fully up and running no later than Thanksgiving.

The thing is, we didn’t have time to peruse the new-and-(sort-of)-improved DPD site because there was a crime wave (relatively speaking) in Highland Park. The excitement started at 1:40 a.m. on Aug. 16, when an officer noticed a small hole in a window on a green 2007 Honda CRV in the 3100 block of St. Johns Drive. The vehicle’s owner said the window had been intact when he last saw it at 8:30 p.m.

Before dawn, similar damage had been inflicted on a black 2011 Cadillac Escalade and a beige 2004 Chevy Tahoe in the same block, as well as …

  • A silver 2000 Mercedes CL500 and a red 1998 Ford Explorer, both in the 3200 block of St. Johns
  • A white Audi S4 (year undisclosed), a black 2005 Chevy Tahoe, and a gray 2014 GMC Acadia, all in the 3300 block of Drexel Drive
  • A silver 2014 Bentley and a 2007 Toyota FJ Cruiser (color undisclosed), both in the 3400 block of Drexel.

Each of these incident reports said the window appeared to have been hit by an unknown projectile. Meanwhile, in what we can only assume is a related case, a miscreant fired two bullets at an attached garage in the 3500 block of St. Johns Drive between 1:30 p.m. on Aug. 15 and 6 p.m. on Aug. 16. The bullets damaged a black 2014 Range Rover and a metal sign in the garage.

Click through to read about more residential crimes in the Park Cities.

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home_alone_macaulay_culkin_kevin_mccallister_boy_fear_shout_fright_346_1280x1024

You know that shocked look Macaulay Culkin had on his face when he realized he was home alone? We imagine the victim in this week’s featured crime had a similar expression when he realized the opposite.

At 6:30 a.m. on July 23, a resident of the 3500 block of Crescent Avenue woke up and discovered that his iPad, his Dell laptop, and a white bag were not on the kitchen counter, where he’d left them before going to bed at 11 p.m. The man was also surprised to find the door leading from the kitchen to his backyard was wide open, because he thought he was the only person in the house. When he realized that someone had rifled through all of the cabinets and drawers in the kitchen, he called the police.

Officers arrived and cleared the property to make sure no burglars were still on the premises. They soon discovered several items – including hats, sunglasses, and briefcases – strewn about the backyard. When the officers entered the detached garage, it was immediately apparent that a burglar had ransacked all three vehicles therein: a silver 2011 Honda CRV, a silver 2011 Mercedes E350, and a green 2011 Land Rover RRV. The victim could not offer a full inventory of stolen items without consulting his wife, who was out of town, and his housekeeper. I bet the homeowner is upgrading their security system after that incident.

Click through for a roundup of last week’s other crimes at homes in the Park Cities.

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Car Thief

At 2:45 a.m. on May 31, a Highland Park police officer noticed that a white Ford truck was parked in the 4200 block of Edmondson Avenue with its emergency lights flashing. The officer approached the truck and found a 24-year-old Carrollton man standing next to it on the curb.

The man said he’d run over a nail and was checking his tire pressure. But the tire in question appeared to be fine, and the officer could find no nail. The man explained that he’d need to move the truck forward, as the nail was between the tire and the truck at the moment.

While the man was maneuvering his truck, the officer ran a background check. The man was not the subject of any active warrants, and his license was valid, so the officer let him go.

About a minute later, the officer found three bags in some bushes next to a nearby house. They contained a $675 pair of Jimmy Choo shoes, a $295 pair of Neiman Marcus pants, $175 worth of Gap Kids clothing, and $10 in coins.

Via receipts in the bags, the officer determined that the clothing belonged to the house’s owners, who later confirmed that the garments and coins had been removed from three vehicles – a Lexus, a Jaguar, and a Yukon – they had left unlocked in their driveway. However, a black men’s glove that the officer found next to the bags was not theirs.

It might belong to the young man from Carrollton. A further exploration of his record showed a criminal history that includes burglary, fraud, DWI, and possession of marijuana.

For more notable crimes in Dallas’ most desirable neighborhoods, read on.

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