"It’s never been this bad." Norfolk Navy families frustrated with car break-ins

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Posted at 2:49 PM, Jul 20, 2022
and last updated 2022-07-20 17:50:37-04

NORFOLK, Va. – Norfolk Police have been dealing with a number of vehicle larcenies across the city this summer. In fact, the topic was brought up in a Norfolk City Council meeting on Tuesday night.

Several military spouses and an active duty member who live in housing just outside Norfolk Naval Station reached out to News 3, stating that this has been an issue recently and they’d like help bringing attention to this problem.

One resident who wanted to remain anonymous wrote, “Both my husband's and my car have been broken into. My husband's was closed up in the garage and they broke into the garage and stole over $1,000 worth of Marine Corps issued items that my husband had to pay back.”

The frustrated resident added, “We PCS in September, and that time cannot come soon enough!”

One sailor who also wanted to remain anonymous met with a News 3 crew on Wednesday. He said that on Father’s Day, his wife’s car was stolen from their driveway while it was locked. He also said his car was parked directly behind his wife’s car, so he wasn’t sure why they stole hers. He explained that his car is newer.

Fortunately, he said the car was recovered. But, he said it’s still in the shop as the interior was badly damaged. Now, he’s out the $500 deductible plus a couple hundred for a new child car seat.

"We also get told it’s a low crime area and there really isn’t any need for more police in the area, when this has become a nightly and weekly thing," he said.

The residents say the thefts are happening even with locked vehicles. One spouse described how it appears the thief is using a device to pry open doors.

"In the last couple of days, it has been absolutely crazy and like I said, it’s escalated from just unlocked doors to prying doors open," said Kate Forschler.

They are frustrated and hope the Navy will increase security patrols in the area near Norfolk Naval Station.

Navy officials say that Norfolk Police Department is responsible for patrolling that area but Liberty Military Housing does employ a private security company. They also said they would look further into the issue.

They want to remind residents to not only lock their cars but to not leave valuables in site and also urge residents to report any unusual activity.