Alderman warns of vehicle break-ins
Staff Photo by Grant Morris Former Mayor of Nashua, James Donchess, speaks out in opposition of the City of Nashua's planned acquision of Pennechuck Waterworks during a public comment section of a hearing in the Aldermanic Chamber at Nashua City Hall, Thursday evening. Purchase photo reprints at PhotoExtra »
An alderman is using an unfortunate mishap as an opportunity for a public service announcement.
During the general comment period of Tuesday’s Board of Aldermen meeting, Alderman-at-Large Jim Donchess shared news that his family’s unlocked cars were broken into the night before – or that morning – in the driveway of his Rockland Street home.
“The money wasn’t there, the car was disheveled – it was obvious that someone had broken in,” Donchess said.
Between Donchess’ car and that of his wife, Vicki, they lost up to $10 in change that they use to pay parking meters.
“We didn’t lose that much, but if someone lost a laptop or something, they could lose a lot of money,” Donchess said.
The former mayor said he reported the incident immediately to the Nashua Police Department, which could not be reached for comment about the situation on Thursday.
Donchess was told, however, that a group of similar incidents had occurred on surrounding streets the same night as his break-in,
including at the house next door.
The crime is common, Donchess said, as he received several emails this week from constituents who say they’ve had their vehicles broken into.
And they are not limited to the northern part of the city.
“The police department tells me that this has been going on throughout the city for quite some time,” Donchess said. “They think it’s often kids who go out at night late and try a car to see if it’s open, and if it is, they go in.”
Board President Brian McCarthy added Tuesday that he has been a victim of car break-ins, too.
“I live in what I would consider to be a fairly safe area of the city and I have very good evidence that people visit my cars more often than I would like in the middle of the night,” McCarthy said. “I will thank the Nashua Police Department for successfully recovering some things I lost out of my car a number of years ago, however.”
The motive for the car break-ins may be drug money, Donchess added, or come from children who are out late at night without supervision.
The Fourth of July was another big night for car break-ins, Donchess learned.
But the problem is preventable.
“I would recommend, everyone, lock your cars at night, leave your light on if you can,” Donchess said Tuesday, “And hopefully we can
prevent this as much as possible.”
Several aldermen also joined Donchess in the warning.
“Having been a very active Crime Watch group member, I would know that in all neighborhoods in the city of Nashua that, Alderman Donchess,
you need to lock your car,” Alderman-at-Large Lori Wilshire said.
“They tell us every Crime Watch that there’s been a rash of break-ins and every car has been unlocked.”
Maryalice Gill can be reached at 594-6490 or email@example.com. Also, follow Gill on Twitter