Residents report vehicles broken into, ransacked

More Greenwood residents woke up to broken glass, ransacked vehicles and items stolen, including a jail officer’s badge and handcuffs.

At least nine residents across the city reported that their vehicles had been ransacked or windows had been broken overnight Monday. Thieves got away with an iPad, a watch and a Johnson County jail officer’s badge and handcuffs, according to Greenwood Police Department reports.

The thefts were reported in multiple areas of the city throughout Tuesday morning, including two more thefts in neighborhoods near Worthsville and Interstate 65, after three had previously been reported. Other areas included along Main Street, east of I-65, near Stop 18 and Averitt roads, near Sheek and Stop 18 roads and near Averitt and Worthsville roads, according to the reports.

Thefts from vehicles are on the rise, especially since thieves can easily sell items they find, including guns and electronics, or use credit and debit cards to get hundreds or thousands of dollars, Sheriff Doug Cox said.

That means residents, including law enforcement, have to be more careful with their items, he said.

The sheriff’s office does not have a policy about jail workers leaving items, such as a badge or handcuffs, in their vehicles, though Cox would prefer they bring those items inside and not leave them in vehicles, he said. The sheriff’s office does have a policy that employees not leave guns or computers in vehicles, he said.

Cox recommends people take a close look at what an officer shows them for identification, he said.

“People just need to really pay attention to what they’re looking at. Don’t just let them flash a badge,” Cox said.

Officers also carry photo identification, and a person can ask for a supervisor if they are concerned about an officer’s identity, Cox said.

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Annie Goeller is managing editor of the Daily Journal. She can be reached at agoeller@dailyjournal.net or 317-736-2718.