NAPERVILLE, Ill. (WLS) --Five teenage boys are accused of carrying out burglaries targeting dozens of cars at a Naperville apartment complex.
Laptops, GPS units, sunglasses and cash are among the things police say they recovered from the weekend burglary spree. They also say what these teens did is a fairly common practice known as carhopping.
"No, I'm not surprised. A couple of years ago my car was broken into. A couple of my kids toys were taken, my checkbook," neighbor Jonathan Gordon said.
Over a dozen vehicles were broken into at a Naperville apartment complex early Sunday morning. And police say five teenage boys, just fifteen and sixteen years old were involved
"They were in fact spending the night at one of the kids houses in the neighborhood and then simply decided to go out in the middle of the night and try car doors," said Naperville Police Sgt. Steven Schindlebeck.
The sleepover took place in the Maplebrook-Bay Colony subdivision across from the apartment complex. Police say it was a resident there who spotted the teens running through peoples' lawns all dressed in black and carrying backpacks who called 911.
"They just hop from car to car and try car doors, if it's locked they go onto the next one. Inevitably they find a number of cars which are left unlocked with very valuable stuff in the car," said Sgt. Schindlebeck.
Carhopping is what police call the practice. They say it's a common occurrence during the warmer months that happens as a result of trusting residents who leave their vehicles unlocked. Nick Beskid used to be one of them
"We had a car parked in the driveway. I came out later to go for a ride and I found the garage door opener was missing. Ever since then I lock my car in my own driveway," he said.
Police say four of the five teens are not from Naperville. They also believe several victims have not reported the thefts yet. Overall, they are asking residents to remember to always lock their car doors, even in their own driveways.