Burlington police to shoppers: ‘Lock it or lose it’

BURLINGTON, N.C. -- During the busy holiday shopping season, people want to get in and out of stores.

Oftentimes they’re rushing to the point they forget to hide what they purchased -- leading to valuables sitting openly in vehicles.

That’s why the “Lock it or Lose it” campaign is so important this time of year as the Burlington Police Department reminds people about holiday crime.

The initiative has a two-part message.

“Wherever they go make sure their vehicle doors are locked and make sure their valuables are out of sight,” Lt. Chris Gaddis said.

Thieves will often target shopping center parking lots.

“They’re looking for certain items and they’re watching people leave the stores. They may follow them inside the store to watch what they purchase. They may watch them return to their car,” Gaddis said.

The Burlington Police Department is planning to film a public service announcement this week regarding “Lock it or Lose it.”

The video will be available on social media.

The department is planning to have extra patrols at shopping centers.

Plainclothes officers will be positioned in some areas.