Natchez burglaries spike in December

Published 12:06 am Saturday, December 28, 2013

NATCHEZ — Natchez police are investigating more than 40 burglaries that have occurred in neighborhoods scattered throughout the city in the past three weeks.

Natchez Police Lt. Craig Godbold said NPD has tracked the series of burglaries of cars, businesses and houses back to Dec. 9. The number of burglaries is about double what the department sees this time of year, Godbold said.

The latest rash of burglaries was Thursday night, when thieves burglarized six vehicles in the Margaret and Lindberg avenues area.

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Thieves also stole a 2011 black four-door Jeep Wrangler with the license plate ADJ440 on Margaret Avenue. Godbold said the keys were left in the Jeep.

Anyone who spots the stolen Jeep Wrangler is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 601-442-5000.

Crime Stoppers offers cash rewards for tips, and callers can remain anonymous. Most of the reported crimes — approximately 30 — have been burglaries of unlocked cars, Godbold said. The burglaries are occurring mainly between midnight and 4 a.m., Godbold said.

Burglars have hit the areas of Ratcliff Place, Orange Avenue, St. Charles Avenue and several other neighborhoods, as well as targeting unlocked cars in hotel parking lots, Godbold said.

“It’s going on all over town,” he said.

“They’re hitting unlocked cars, taking anything they can get, (including) cameras, laptops, guns and cash. And if you leave your keys in your car, they’re going to take your car.”

No arrests have been made in the burglaries, Godbold said, and police are asking anyone with information about the burglaries to call Crime Stoppers.

Godbold said residents should lock their car doors and keep an eye out for suspicious people in their neighborhoods.

“Please lock your doors and be aware of your surroundings,” Godbold said. “If you see strange people in your neighborhood, call the police or Crime Stoppers.

“These people are just taking advantage of you if you leave your doors unlocked.”

Godbold said patrols have been increased in light of the holidays, a time when burglaries frequently happen.