Glenn Almack had just finished enjoying a dinner with his family.

Afterward, Almack took his mother home. As they were getting in the car, Almack noticed a pile of clothes in the driveway next to his ’99 Ford. Had someone had dropped something off for him?

As he got closer, Almack knew what had happened. The clothes had been taken from his family cars, along with quite a few other belongings.

“It was a brazen act,” Almack says. “Even with all those lights on, I wished that I locked my car.”

During the three hours that the Almacks were dining, even with the porch light and holiday lights on the house, both of Almack’s vehicles were burglarized: his ’99 Ford and his wife’s ’07 Ford.

The cars’ alarm systems were not active because they were left unlocked. Because of this, the culprits made off with $1,520 worth of miscellaneous items left in the car.

Almack says when the police arrived, they took fingerprints, but the prints didn’t register with a match.

Sr. Cpl. Herb Ebsen says that Almack probably saved himself some property damage by leaving the doors unlocked.

“We have seen film on these guys and [thieves] walk around looking inside of cars,” Ebsen says. “Once they see something they want, they check if the car is unlocked. If it isn’t, then they will break the windows and take it. It only takes five to 10 seconds, and that is quick.

“I remember this one case with a woman that bought a brand new BMW with new tags,” Ebsen says.  “She pulled up the post office on 67 and Hampton Road, and she left her purse in the front seat. It was less than a minute, and her new BMW had a busted window and her purse was gone.”

Ebsen also points out that criminals are knowledgeable on state legislation changing burglary of a motor vehicle from a felony to a misdemeanor.

“I know a guy that broke into four cars on the same lot,” Ebsen says. “He looked me in the face and said ‘That’s OK. It’s just a misdemeanor.’”