Cars vandalized in Surpise, thief caught on camera

Posted: Updated:
By Tami Hoey By Tami Hoey

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Forget the holiday hangover. Some neighbors in Surprise woke up Friday morning to a mini-crime spree, in which their cars were vandalized. And some of it was caught on camera.

"It was creepy, when I saw him going through the vehicle, like he spent so much time in this car," said Lisa Howie.

Howie was creeped out by a shirtless man in a ball-cap and shorts rummaging through her partner's car Friday morning.

It happened in the 15800 block of West Paradise Lane in Surprise.

The thief's motive?

"Money, money. I think he's looking for change and that's what he took mostly all the money in the change in that car he took out of it. Anything small to sell, he took," she said.

It happened around 4:00 a.m., and Howie's home surveillance system recorded it.

In addition to loose change, Howie said some bullets and tools were also taken.

"Somebody's got to know this guy. I mean really. We don't know him from the neighborhood," she said.

They were not the only targets, though.

"This is him, going to the neighbor's house with my box of wine and his backpack," she said.

He eventually returns the box of wine to the car he took it from, then proceeds to break into the neighbors' cars, stealing their change too.

Howie admits, though, the man did not have to break into their car because it was left unlocked.

"You know, you're overwhelmed. It's the holidays, unloading, loading," said Howie.

She hopes this will be a cautionary tale for others, not to get too wrapped up this holiday season so you can avoid becoming a victim. 

"Make sure you lock your doors. Make sure if there is anything in the car that you have to leave in the car don't let it be seen; hide it. Anything of value, take it out," she said.

Our 3TV crew did spot officers patrolling the area Friday evening. If you recognize the man in the video you should call Surprise Police.