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More drivers leaving car doors unlocked for criminals, detectives say

21 guns stolen from parked cars in Coral Springs last year

CORAL SPRINGS, Fla. – Crooks are stealing guns from cars and car owners are making it easy, according to authorities, who say more and more drivers are leaving their cars unlocked.

According to Coral Springs Detective Paul Kempinski, 21 guns were stolen from parked cars in 2015. In 20 of those cases, the doors were left unlocked.

"It's a huge danger to the community because the people doing these (crimes) are not just career criminals or burglars - sometimes they're even teenagers," he said.

Kempinksi said that in one incident in November, the stolen gun was then ditched at a local park, where it was found by a 5-year-old boy. The boy eventually told an adult, and was unharmed.

In many cases, the guns are left unsecured in the center console or a door compartment.

For a gun owner with concealed weapons permits, "It's certainly not illegal, but it's probably not smart, especially to leave it overnight," Kempinski said.

Kempinski said it's always a good idea to double-check your car door before you park, or leave it in your driveway for the night.

"For those that see something suspicious in your neighborhood, especially late at night, call [police]," Kempinski said.