After notifying authorities about a person trying to break into their vehicle, some Sterling residents took matters into their own hands.
According to the Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office, a resident in the 200 block of West Beech Street in Sterling called about 6 a.m. on Sept. 12 about a vehicle tampering in progress.
“While the deputies were en route,” the incident report stated, “the complainants apprehended the suspects with the stolen items.”
After deputies determined the suspect was a juvenile, they notified his parents and released him in their custody, with charges pending.
Vehicle break-in reports have been rampant in Loudoun County. In the Sept. 10 LCSO Incident Report, there 13 reports of vehicle theft, including 10 in Sterling alone.
Last week, LCSO announced the arrest of two men — one from Herndon and the other from Ashburn — for a number of vehicle break-ins and fraud with the credit cards taken during those crimes. The number of reports since then, and the iincident Sept. 12 involving the juvenile, show these break-ins are not the work of one or two criminals and one or two arrests is not going to solve the problem.
Last summer, Sheriff Mike Chapman and his office implemented the “9 p.m. Routine” initiative to remind residents to make sure each night that their vehicles are locked and valuables — including garage door openers — are removed. That has resulted in a reduction in incidents, but recents events are evidence that many people are not heeding the warnings.
As part of the 9 p.m. Routine program, residents are urged to “Lock it up tight, every night.”