MANTOLOKING — Borough officials are once again warning residents to lock their cars and secure their valuables inside after two incidents last week.
According to Mayor Lance White, on Sept. 23, a resident had his wallet and other items taken from his vehicle outside his home.
“The security photos showed two men with masks and gloves as the thieves,” said Mr. White.
This break-in came on the same day a car was stolen right off Main Street in Bay Head. The vehicle was unlocked with a key fob inside, according to the mayor.
“I don’t want to repeat myself, but I will do so nonetheless,” said Mr. White.
“Please keep in mind that these days it is impossible to steal a car without the fob,” added the mayor. “If an attempt is made, the system shuts down.”
These incidents follow a string of thefts and attempt up and down the Jersey Shore.
On July 30, Mantoloking residents saw this first-hand, when Point Pleasant Beach Police officers arrested four Essex County men in Mantoloking, who they say attempted to evade police, resulting in a vehicle pursuit.
Police say the men were in the area with the intent to commit motor-vehicle thefts.
At 3 a.m., Point Pleasant Beach Patrol Officers Bryan Benites and David Marchetti approached two suspicious vehicles on Woodland Avenue in Point Pleasant Beach driving at a slow rate of speed.
After pointing a spotlight on one of the vehicles, both vehicles accelerated quickly out of the area, police say, leading to a pursuit through Bay Head and into Mantoloking.
During this pursuit, one vehicle struck a Mantoloking police cruiser before becoming disabled, the second vehicle crashed into parked cars on Lagoon Lane in Mantoloking.
After the vehicles became disabled, all suspects fled on foot and were caught by police.
The area had several vehicle break-ins throughout the summer.
According to Mayor White though, the common factor in most situations is vehicles that are unlocked and have a key fob inside.
“We do not want to be a soft target when we could risk people coming on our porch to see if anyone is home,” said Mr. White. “That’s the next step and it isn’t a good one.”
According to Mayor White, Mantoloking Police are constantly training in different areas to “maintain the highest degree readiness possible for different situations that they may encounter,” he said.
To that end on Sept. 22 and 23, officers attended a training regimen held by the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office, the mayor said, drilling in entry, search of homes and SWAT teams, among other things.
“I understand that this was a very successful two days and that a lot was learned as well as reinforced,” he said.
For more information on incidents, visit mantoloking.org/ and search for the police departments page.
This is an excerpt of the print article. For more on this story, read The Ocean Star—on newsstands Friday or online in our e-Edition.
Subscribe today! If you're not already an annual subscriber to The Ocean Star, get your subscription today! For just $34 per year, you will receive local mail delivery weekly, with pages and pages of local news and online access to our e-edition on Starnewsgroup.com.