Deputies believe organized crime group behind car break-ins
GREENSBORO, N.C. — Guilford County deputies are working to identify several suspects they believe are connected to dozens of car break-ins that stretch from the Charlotte area to the Piedmont Triad.
Investigators believe an organized crime group called the “Felony Lane Gang” may have swept through the area earlier this week, targeting at least 25 cars for credit cards and cash.
The group operates by having one group of people break into cars while a second group disguises themselves to resemble victim’s identification photos, according to the Guilford County Sheriff’s Office. Group members then go through the furthest lane from bank tellers at drive-thru locations and try to cash checks.
“It’s a traveling group because where the cars are being used is constantly off main roads throughout North Carolina,” said Sgt. JJ Hamlett of the Guilford County Sheriff’s Department.
Deputies responded to four car break-ins at Triad Park on Monday. They believe the incidents are tied to an additional four car break-ins reported in Greensboro and Kernersville around the same time.
Guilford County deputies say there were notified by detectives around the Triad about similar break-ins, which led them to believe the rash of crimes are connected. It’s believed the break-ins at Triad Park, in Greensboro and Kernersville are connected to similar crimes in Davidson County, Salisbury, and Concord.
“This is something that’s been going on for years now,” Hamlett said.
Sheriff’s deputies say the thieves are going after purses left in cars at recreation areas; grabbing credit cards, personal ID’s, checks and cash. Several purses stolen from Triad Park were found in a dumpster at the Holiday Inn Express in Clemmons.
“We highly recommend not to leave anything of value sitting in plain view in your vehicle, locked or unlocked,” Hamlett said.
Two women have been photographed using stolen credit cards from the break-ins, according to deputies.
Deputies say in two instances, thieves sent stolen money to Fort Lauderdale, Fla. using Western Credit Unions.
Deputies say the group swept through the Triad before several years ago.
They believe the suspects may have left the area, but are asking for anyone with information to contact the Guilford County Sheriff’s Office (336) 641-3355 or Crimestoppers (336) 373-1000.