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Home > News > Violent Holiday Car-Jacking Scheme Being Reported 

Violent Holiday Car-Jacking Scheme Being
Reported Throughout the Country

Shoppers Need to Stay Alert at Holiday Time  to
Prevent Injury and Theft

December, 2006 - Please be advised and alert for this violent Holiday Car-Jacking Scheme. 

In an all too frequent scenario being reported throughout the country in many different states and localities:

You walk across the mall parking lot, unlock your car, load whatever packages you may have and get inside. You start the engine and shift into Reverse.

When you look into the rearview mirror as you are backing out of your parking space, you notice some sort of paper flier or advertising sticker stuck to the middle of your car’s rear window.

So, you instinctively shift into Park, unlock your doors and jump out to remove the paper (or whatever it is) that is obstructing your view.  As you are reaching to remove the paper obstruction, carjackers appear instantly out of nowhere, throw you down or shove you out of the way, jump into your car and take off.

The attackers leave in a hurry and are not concerned where you landed or who else might be in their way.  Many victims have been struck and injured by their own vehicle as the thieves escape.

Normally in this scenario, a female victim will have left her purse or wallet inside the car when she gets out to remove the paper on the window, so these violent criminals are also now in possession of your identification, address, credit cards, cash and have keys to your home. 

Your identity, safety and security have all been severely compromised in less than 15 seconds!  (In a small percentage of these cases a baby or small child has been inadvertently kidnapped by thieves unaware they were strapped into the backseat!)  

This is a horrible crime that has traumatic and lingering effects on its victims.

Unfortunately, due to crowds and the “hustle-bustle” criminals prey on unsuspecting, frenzied or seemingly careless victims much more frequently during this time of year.  Please remember to stay alert and be aware of your surroundings at all times – not only during the holiday season.  

To stay as safe as possible and greatly reduce the chances of becoming a victim, consistently take these precautions:

1 - As you finish shopping and are preparing to exit a store or mall, take a few seconds to assess your situation.  Ask yourself:

  • Are you alone or with small children?
  • Are you clearly struggling with numerous packages?
  • Is it dark outside?  Is the parking lot well lighted?
  • Is your vehicle in an isolated area or far from the exit doors?
  • Does the store or mall have a history of these types of crimes?

If you assess that you may be at risk, locate a store or shopping mall security or loss prevention officer and request an escort to your vehicle.  Most major malls have security on site and they will be happy to help when asked.  Most malls also have roving security agents patrolling the parking lot who can be contacted to escort you.

2 - As you approach your vehicle, do so from the best angle possible for maximum visibility.  Pay attention to other people in your immediate area.  Ask yourself:

  • Are you being watched or followed?
  • Are there people at or very near your vehicle?
  • Are these people walking to, or from, the store or a vehicle – or do they appear to be loitering?
  • Are there advertisements or fliers on most vehicles you observe?
  • Is there anything attached to your vehicle that looks unusual?

If you perceive a threat or feel at risk as you approach your vehicle – STOP!  Return to the store or mall and report what is concerning you.  Do not walk into a situation you feel threatened about.  If store or mall personnel do not respond or offer to contact security or law enforcement – call the police yourself and explain your concerns.

3 - If all else fails and you are already in your vehicle when you notice the paper or sticker on your window – make sure your doors are locked and drive away as normal.  You can always stop later to remove whatever is attached to your window.

Holiday shopping can (and should) be fun but it can also be hectic and at times even dangerous.  Stay alert and remember these tips – and enjoy yourself.

Summit Loss Prevention Consulting – Be Informed, Safe & Secure



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The local and Midwest markets we serve in and around Indiana include Batesville, Bloomfield, Bloomington, Boonville, Brownsburg, Carmel, Chicago, Cincinnati, Columbus, Derby, Detroit, Edinburgh, Elkhart, Fishers, Fort Wayne, Fortville, Gary, Greenfield, Greensburg, Indianapolis, Kokomo, Lafayette, Lebanon, Louisville, Marion, Mooresville, Muncie, Noblesville, Notre Dame, Peru, Plainfield, Richmond, Rockport, Rockville, Rushville, Smithville, South Bend, Syracuse, Terre Haute, Topeka, Union City, Valparaiso, Wabash, Warsaw, West Lafayette, Westfield and Zionsville.