By Roger Ball
Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office officials said there has been an increase in golf club thefts in the Sun Cities. Most of the thefts were from golf carts left in garages with open doors.
Sun City West resident Carole Pfliiger told the Independent her husband’s golf bag and clubs were stolen from their garage after they had left the door up for about 20 minutes after returning from a grocery store. When they went back out to the garage they noticed the golf bags were missing.
A neighbor reported seeing a white car in the cul-de-sac, which wasn’t unusual, but thought it strange when it drove off at a high rate of speed.
MCSO District Three commander, Captain Paul Chagolla, said he is aware of the situation and will soon be deploying a new shift structure to better deter the home burglaries and thefts. He also reminded residents they must take certain precautions, like closing their garage doors. If the residence only has a carport, he recommends taking the golf clubs inside.
The Sun City West posse warns people every year about the dangers of leaving garage doors open for an extended period.A drive down Ballard Drive in Sun City West recently found four homes with open garage doors and golf carts very visible within a few minutes.
At the home of Ralph and Linda Peel, Mrs. Peel said she was not aware of any thefts and thought her husband was in the garage, which was not occupied.
A few blocks down the street, Gordon Morris said he was not aware of the golf club thefts but knew of one other crime in the area. He reported a neighbor had their garage door opened remotely by thieves during the night, probably using a remote control—just driving down the road and pushing the button until one garage door responded.
As a result, he disconnects the remote control receiver from inside the garage every night.
Sun City West Posse public information officer Jan Vejraska said the posse reminds residents annually and throughout the year to keep their garage doors closed. They warn residents that snakes and other wild creatures can easily enter the garage, as well as thieves who may steal valuable items.
The problem of residents suffering thefts because of leaving the garage doors open is also an issue in Sun City.
SCHOA recently advised residents with a notice about a large number of car thefts as well as home burglaries in Sun City and warned residents to be very careful.
Sun City resident Glenn Johnson on North Boswell Boulevard, was the victim of a golf bag theft December 28. Mr. Johnson said the thief parked in front of a worker’s truck next door, greeted the worker, walked into his garage and picked up his clubs, again greeted the worker, and then drove off. Because he acted so friendly, the worker didn’t realize the man was actually a thief.
Mr. Johnson said the suspect’s vehicle was described as a two-door white Honda.
His golf clubs had been fitted for him, so not everyone could use them, he said. He anticipates a new set arriving soon.Since that event Mr. Johnson still leaves his garage door open much of the time but has installed a motion detector near the door to alert him of anyone coming near his garage.
Visit www.mcso,org, www.suncityposse.org, and www.scwposse.com.