As shoppers head to the stores, police say lock your car doors.
Law enforcement wants you to be aware of break-ins and theft. It may only get worse as the holiday season begins.
Northfield resident Sara Breckenridge has never had her car broken into.
"We always lock our doors just in case," says Breckenridge.
It's a habit she's definitely holding onto this holiday shopping season.
"You could live in the nicest neighborhood but you never know if people are going to come by."
Some police departments report higher break-ins this time of year when people are returning to their cars with more bags.
"People go to the store just for a minute and then they come out and their stuff is missing," says Officer Joseph Carriveau of the Berlin Police Department.
Officer Carriveau says the department averages 10 to 15 car break-ins a month, but its seen a spike in recent weeks mostly involving people not locking their car doors.
He says people should not only lock their doors, but also put their bags where they can't be seen by others just to be extra safe.
"Your best bet for any valuables or sort of money is to put them in the trunk out of sight."
The people breaking into cars are taking larger items of value, such as electronics.
But there are things you can keep on file to help investigators track down your goods should you be a target. One of them includes a serial number.
“We can put it into our computer system, and pictures of your items with distinctive features would also help our investigation," says Officer Carriveau.
Stealing property that amounts to more than $900 is considered a felony in Vermont and punishable by up to 10 years in prison.
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