Thieves using stolen truck to break into other cars in downtown New Orleans
NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - Ryan Thiele and his wife expected a memorable Sunday in the Superdome, the first time in two years the New Orleans Saints season ticket holders were going to a game.
After the Saints fell to the Cincinnati Bengals, the couple made the rainy walk to their truck that they paid $30 to park in a lot at the intersection of Gravier and Rampart Streets, but they quickly realized their gray F-150 with Thiele’s company decals on the side was gone.
“There was like broken glass on the ground and all that,” Thiele said. “I thought the lot would be protected in some kind of capacity.”
Since then, Thiele has been in contact with the NOPD and the lot manager about the theft, and his insurance allowed him to rent another truck so the business owner can continue his roofing jobs. But while he was on a job site in Lake Charles, he said he was getting calls from witnesses saying a truck with Green Country Rooftops decals was breaking into other cars parked in the CBD.
“It’s kind of alarming. Especially if the picture where there is my truck, and the guy is just hanging out of it,” Thiele said. “I know [the police] are overworked and stressed out and everything but where are they? Where are the authorities? New Orleans is kind of under a pandemic of crime.”
Thiele says he’s been reporting each sighting to the NOPD and encourages those who might see the stolen car to not approach those who are driving it.
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Meanwhile, it’s not just Saints fans who park in the area who worry about if their car will be broken into, it’s also people like Raquel Bueno who work in this area.
“You never know if your car is going to be broken into or not,” Bueno said.
She says she’s always on high alert and takes extra precautions when her garage fills up and she has to park in a lot.
“I don’t leave anything in my car and if I do it’s nothing valuable. I just feel like sometimes leaving my car unlocked, because if they want anything than help yourself,” she said.
According to the NOPD Crime Map, the area of the CBD between Poydras and Common Streets and Loyola and O’Keefe Avenues has seen a total of three car thefts and six car break-ins over the past 30 days.
And people like Bueno hope it’s an issue that gets resolved or that those who are breaking in find a better lifestyle.
“There’s plenty of jobs out there. A lot of people short staffed so instead of stealing cars, go get a job,” she said.
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