Over the weekend Wellington area experienced a high number of thefts from vehicles, with eight incidents reported on Friday, 12 on Saturday and a further four on Sunday.
"Thefts from vehicles are a curse on our city," says Detective Sergeant Richard Gibson of Wellington CIB.
"People seem to underestimate just how quick and opportunistic thieves are. You can literally turn your back for a moment and that is enough time for them to smash your window and take whatever you have left in plain view."
"That camera, sports bag or spare change you've left sitting in your car is like an open invitation for a thief to smash your window and take it. The inconvenience to you to report it to Police, make an insurance claim and eventually replace the item, just isn't worth the risk," says Det Sgt Gibson.
There are some simple steps people can take to deter would be thieves.
• Lock your car. Consider installing an alarm.
• Take all valuables with you. If you must leave them in the car, lock them in the boot out of sight.
• Park in well lit areas.
• Mark valuable items or register their serial numbers at www.snap.org.nz
The thefts over the weekend have largely been attributed to one offender. A stolen laptop was tracked back to a Hutt Valley address and, following execution of search warrant ,a 25 year old man has been charged with three counts of Receiving, Possession of a Methamphetamine Utensil, Possession of Cannabis and two counts of Obstruction. He will next appear in the Wellington District Court on 16 October 2015 and further charges may still be laid.
"We have a very strong message for offenders too", says Det Sgt Gibson. "Crimes involving theft from cars is a high priority for us. We are committed to investigating every case, identifying every offender and holding them to account".