Summer Avenue a recent hotspot for car break-ins

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. — The black handle on Lillie Stanton's car is now a constant reminder of when a thief tried to get in.

"I think he wanted to see if anything was in the trunk," she said.

Stanton says the thief was caught breaking her handle and says thankfully, a stranger scared him off before he actually got in. "I feel like they don't care. I hate that."

That same feeling is something many people in Memphis can now relate to.

Take Summer Avenue for example.

Within one mile of the Waring intersection a dozen people reported their cars were broken into along the busy street.

The victims reported everything from garage door openers to electronics, keys, purses, makeup and even guns were taken from their cars.

The crimes now have nearby neighborhood associations warning residents to not leave anything in their cars when they go shopping or out to eat.

Police say they're seeing the same trend throughout the city.

"We are having large numbers of different groups, not just one group, but different groups going to different areas where cars are parked and doing multiple auto burglaries," said Colonel Darrell Sheffield.

He said the problem seems to be getting worse, even though they're making arrests.

"They don't stay in jail very long. It's not a personal crime. It's not a crime against people," said Sheffield.

He's asking you to not leave anything in your car especially your guns.

"Stow it. Don't show it," he said. "You probably shouldn't even leave the change when you go through the drive through in the console.

It's also important to remember to keep an eye on your surrounding and if you see something say something.

Anyone with information can call Crime Stoppers at (901)-528-CASH. All calls are confidential.

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