Politics

Pickpocketing up 175% in downtown Austin



AUSTIN (KXAN) — Getting your pockets, purse or telephone stolen may cause a complete lot of complications nevertheless it’s occurring an increasing number of in Austin. Pickpocketing is up 65% throughout town since final 12 months.

“You see some lady with a Louis Vuitton purse in their shopping cart, or just barely sat down next to her feet or hanging off a chair at a restaurant, and she’s so engaged (in conversation) that (pickpocketers) know (they) get cash for that,” stated Valor Defense Academy enterprise proprietor Kelsey Crouch. “They’re smart. They know they’re not stealing Walmart purses.”

Crouch teaches firearm security and is set to point out folks learn how to defend themselves — folks like Christina Yarchin who stated the coaching has helped her really feel higher about her security.

“It moves you from paranoia to confidence and awareness and that feels incredible,” Yarchin stated.

The newest Austin Police information exhibits citywide pickpocketing has shot up 269% when evaluating this February to the identical time final 12 months. With downtown seeing the best spike year-to-year of 175%. It’s an space the place we’ve seen an increasing number of crowds begins to collect lately.

“You have to think criminals like pickpocketers are looking for an easy score,” stated Crouch.

She added there’s a particular individual these criminals are in search of.

“The unsuspecting victim, the girl with the ear pods in her head buried in the phone, and she doesn’t even know she’s been pickpocketed till after she maybe gets back to her car and she’s like, ‘Oh, man, my wallet’s gone.’”

She stated there are easy steps you’ll be able to take to guard your self and your property.

“You don’t have to be like a black belt ninja, or even carry a firearm, to protect yourself,” she stated. “You just have to pay attention.”

The different part in Austin that has seen a spike in pickpocketing is within the southeast space a part of city — up 200% from final 12 months. There is sweet information, nevertheless. There are a number of areas throughout town the place pickpocketing has gone down together with components of north and northeast Austin.



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