Thieves targeting minivans on South and Far South Side

FOX 32 / SUN-TIMES - Police are warning South and Far South Side residents of 10 vehicle thefts reported this month, the most recent Friday and five within a four-hour span Thursday, in the Avalon Park, South Chicago and Deering neighborhoods.

During these incidents, older model minivans were stolen from the street by unknown offenders, according to a community alert from Chicago Police.

One family learned their lesson the hard way.

Jerome Jackson is frustrated and who can blame him. Twice this month his family's van has disappeared from in front of their home, most recently last Thursday.

“I lifted up, it was 4:00 AM, the van was gone again, this is out of control. I wish they would leave my van alone. I need my van for me and my family,” said Shurita Bowers.

“Basically they're only using these vans to like, you know, do your dirty work with cracking cards and stuff or you never know what else, you know,” said victim Jerome Jackson.

Jackson says he knows that by what was left behind by the thieves.

“The first time it was stolen just two credit card machines, a calculator, some papers with, you know information on there, how much money came off there, yeah, receipts they got how much upon this card on that card,” Jackson said.

Police are encouraging people to keep their vans locks and use anti-theft devices, which is exactly what Jackson has done.

“The best thing I can say to everybody out here with these kind of vans, these Chrysler's Town and Country's, put a club on it, because if you don't put the club on it, it most definitely, in this east area right here, these people is taking these kinds of vans, so be aware,” Jackson said.

Other safety measures that police recommend is parking in a well-lit area, and installing a GPS tracker if possible.

The thefts happened:

• at 7 a.m. Mar. 3 in the 8100 block of South Chicago Avenue;

• at 2 p.m. Mar. 6 in the 8000 block of South Muskegon Avenue;

• at 10 p.m. Mar. 7 in the 10100 block of South Yates Avenue;

• at 2 p.m. Mar. 7 in the 8700 block of South Kimbark Avenue;

• at 8 p.m. Mar. 16 in the 8200 block of South Luella Avenue;

• at 10 p.m. Mar. 16 in the 8400 block of South Luella Avenue;

• at 8 p.m. Mar. 16 in the 8300 block of South Dante Avenue;

• at 11 p.m. Mar. 16 in the 8200 block of South Ridgeland Avenue;

• at 11 p.m. Mar. 16 in the 8100 block of South Saginaw Avenue; and

• at 12 p.m. Mar. 17 in the 3200 block of East 91st Street.

Anyone with information should contact Area South detectives at (312) 747-8273.

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