Norman Police warn residents of preventable, common crime

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NORMAN, Okla. - Norman police are sending out a warning after any residents making the same mistake, setting themselves up to be victims of a crime.

Police in Norman said smash-and-grab robberies are likely one of the most reported crimes.

It's something police said, in most cases, is preventable.

Norman Police Capt. Tom Easley said, "Probably one of the biggest problems we have in Norman."

It's what police call a crime of opportunity.

Easley said, "A lot of them won't even break into a car, they'll just go around and pull on the door handle and if the door opens, they'll take whatever they can."

The most recent case was earlier this week outside The Health Club.

The window was smashed and the victim's purse was taken.

The club manager said in the more than 20 years he's worked there, a crime like this has happened only a handful of times and it's always the same story.

Manager Shawn Magee said, "In every one of those, they've had their purse visible; it's always been a purse."

Police said while it can happen to anyone, women are more vulnerable because they often leave their purse in site or barely hidden under a seat.

Magee encourages clients to use the club's lockers to keep property safe.

Police said if you are out and feel the need to leave something of value in your car, do not leave it in where anyone can see or reach it.

"If you don't want it to get stolen, don't leave it in your car," Easley said. "If you must leave it in the car, put it in the truck so it's not visible."

Police said often times the smash-and-grab burglar will use a victim's credit cards within a matter of minutes.

They move fast and are hard to catch.

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