Fort Lauderdale neighborhood on edge over rise in golf cart thefts

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – Authorities are sounding the alarm on a crime trend just in time for the holiday season.

Thieves are targeting golf carts, and police in Fort Lauderdale are searching for the crooks responsible.

“I walked out to my driveway with my son and realized that my golf cart wasn’t there,” said victim John Calabrese, a resident of Lauderdale Harbours. “These are things that are happening not just by whim…this is a planned coordinated type of attack.”

Calabrese said it’s the latest in what he and many of his neighbors describe as an ongoing issue with vehicle thefts where they live.

“I have three cars, each one was stolen,” said resident Barry Zimmerman.

The city’s police department has taken to social media, asking people to take precautions.

“Other things like the boot that you can put on a golf cart tire,” said Calabrese. “I also installed a hidden kill switch, because these things are extremely easy to hotwire. I thankfully had put an apple air tag on the golf cart.”

Calabrese had placed the tracking device in his golf cart and used to find his vehicle himself.

“It was only about five minutes from my house, when I discovered where it was I drove past that location, drove about 500 feet down the road, called the authorities with the exact address,” he said. “Also noticed there was another golf cart right there as well.”

Residents in the neighborhood told Local 10 News they’re worried what the crooks will target next, after their cars and golf carts.

“What’s stopping them from upping their game and doing home break-ins,” said Zimmerman.

About the Author:

Christian De La Rosa joined Local 10 News in April 2017 after spending time as a reporter and anchor in Atlanta, San Diego, Orlando and Panama City Beach.