GRAHAM (KFDX/KJTL) — Nearly 15 Graham residents are not giving up on recovering valuable items after their cars were broken into within a two-day period last month.

The city of Graham has a population of 8,765.

“This is Graham, I grew up here my entire life,” Graham resident Ross Shifflett said. “It’s a safe place.”

But this safe town has seen a number of vehicle burglaries recently.

“I left the keys in the car thinking I would be taking another trip later on in the day but I left my wallet sitting there,” Shifflett said. “It was right outside our bedroom window where our car is usually parked. To know they were just right there, who knows how long and I’m sure they worked fast.”

Shifflett is not the only one. Thirteen different reports were made in the early morning hours of Sept. 17, 2022, and Sept. 18, 2022. All of which were within a few miles of one another. But it isn’t just a two-day period that’s the issue. There has been an increase in vehicle burglaries all year.

“We have at the police department seen an increase this year in burglaries from years in the past,” Chief Brent Bullock said. “It seems like they’re almost more organized than what it used to be just a spree overnight.”

Bullock said he may know what has been the cause of this.

“I think it’s a certain group of juveniles at this point that we continue to deal with,” Bullock said. “We do have some leads on it. We ran one search warrant here in town with the intention to locate some property but were unsuccessful.”

As for how many unlocked vehicles were burglarized on the 17th and 18th, Shifflett hopes something is done before something more serious happens.

“Every one of them was unlocked,” Bullock said. “Thieves are generally lazy. They don’t want to work for anything. None of the vehicles that we investigated had forced entry.”

“Eventually in this town especially, somebody is going to not wait to call the cops,” Shifflett said. “They’re going to not want to wait that short four or five minutes for somebody to get there and take care of it.”

So, to avoid that, thieves really should think long and hard about whether it’s worth the risk, as residents like Ross remove personal belongings from their vehicles just in case and lock their doors.

If you have any information on any incidents or if you just see some unusual behavior in your neighborhood, you can call the Graham Police Department at 940-549-6441. You can also call Crime Stoppers and earn a cash reward at 940-322-9888.