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CAR THIEVES: Break-Ins At Gyms Increase

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West Des Moines Police say they've seen a spike in the number of car break-ins this week, especially vehicles in gym parking lots.

When pulling up to the Walnut Creek YMCA in West Des Moines, people will see a new sign.

“I was wondering if there had been more break-ins or something and I was a little worried,” says Alicia Cummins who works out at the YMCA.

West Des Moines Police say in the last week, they've had 16 thefts from vehicles, half of those happening at gym parking lots.

“We just tried to take a proactive approach and make sure the people who are using those facilities  were aware that it`s important to lock your vehicle and take any valuable with you and you secure them in a safe place or a secured locker,” says Lt. Jim Barrett with the West Des Moines Police Dept.

The sign reminds people to lock their vehicles and bring all valuables inside with them, and not leave anything in site for a potential thief to see.

“I appreciate them taking the steps but that just worries me, so I’m going to be extra careful that`s for sure,” says Cummins.

And it’s not just West Des Moines gyms being hit.

We spoke to Jeni, who didn't want her full name used, told us her car was broken into on Monday.

“I was walking out to my car and noticed my driver`s side window had been broke into,” says Jeni.

Jeni says, early Monday morning her briefcase and her daughter's backpack were taken from her car at The Altoona Campus.

And although it wasn't anything to valuable it still doesn't make the crime any easier to handle.

“It does make you feel violated, just makes you wonder who`s out there,” says Jeni.

Police say these types of crimes can happen in any parking lot, something Jeni says she'll be passing on for others to keep in mind.

“I just want to make everyone aware, that there are people out there, who do not have good intentions and are out to take anything they can see in your car,” says Jeni.

West Des Moines Police also put a similar sign up at Prairie Life Fitness.

They say the signs will stay up for about 10 days.