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North Charlotte thefts increase

Police in north Charlotte say they are experiencing an increase in theft from motor vehicles during the nighttime hours.

Most of these crimes are happening in residential areas, police say.

Charlotte-Mecklenburg police Capt. Andy Leonard said today that in a number of recent cases, victims' vehicles were unlocked, with valuable items such as GPS devices, IPods and radar detectors in plain sight.

“Remember to lock your vehicles and remove any property,” Leonard advised.

Theft from motor vehicle has been among the biggest crime problems for local police during the last few years. For the first six months of this year, that category of crime has increased 20.1 percent across CMPD's coverage area.

Theft from motor vehicle actually has dropped 5.5 percent for the first six months of this year in the North Division, compared to last year. But that type of crime has increased 35.1 percent in the neighboring University City Division. Police say that since division lines mean nothing to criminals, they often spread their activities from one division to another.

The North Division stretches from the Mountain Island Lake area on the west to near the Harris Boulevard-Sugar Creek Road area in north Charlotte.