Barrage of Wolcott Break-Ins Overnight

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Do you think it's safe to leave your car unlocked?

Residents in Wolcott, CT, are thinking twice after a barrage of break-ins Monday night.

The suspects stole items from eight cars--seven of which had unlocked doors and one that the suspects smashed the window to enter. Of those eight cars, the suspects stole two of them--which both had keys left inside--and drove them into 18 mailboxes on Ivy Lane.

It all happened between 11 p.m. and 1 a.m. according to police, who believe  three young men were behind it all.

The suspects are still on the loose.

Police are urging all residents to stop leaving such easy targets.

"I go and read the note on the kitchen table 'hun, kids knocked down our mailbox and ken's too.' Little did I know, it was more than ours and Ken's," said Mike Hoban, who was repairing his mailbox Tuesday afternoon.

The 18 mailboxes impacted by the incident suffered various damage. Hoban's mailbox post was torn in half.

"As long as nobody got hurt. I'll fix it," said Hoban, who didn't seem too concerned.

Police believe the damage was not an accident.

"This piece was all the way over there," said Dan LaMontagne, pointing to his mailbox post.

"When I first moved in my neighbors would hear me click my alarm and they're like 'oh you're in Wolcott!' And I said well, 'click click' [laughing] Lock the car!"

Wolcott Chief of Police Edward Stephens didn't have an answer about how many times does this have to happen before people lose their false sense of security.

Chief Stephens said several victims lost purses, cash and valuables.

"They'll take the money out of the wallet and leave the charge cards so they're getting a little bit wiser, the criminals," said Stephens, explaining how thieves avoid detection.

The chief says witnesses watched three young men run off after one of the cars came to a rest following a final crash into a mailbox.

Detectives are scouring for fingerprints and any evidence left behind.

Though it was a relatively minor theft, residents like John Kirschenheiter say it still hits pretty hard.

"People work hard for their stuff and to have it stolen, even if it's $80, whatever, that's a lot of money," Kirschenheiter said.

Kirschenheiter remembers when similar car thefts happened two years ago in town. He had hoped people would learn to lock their doors.

Chief Stephens says the same thing--that locking doors and not leaving valuables in cars makes a big difference.

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