vanessa-newVanessa Remmers covers Stafford County government and schools for and The Free Lance-Star.

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Sheriff: Lock your car, or lose your valuables

When cars are unlocked and shopping bags full of presents are in sight, many people unintentionally become easy targets for thefts during the holiday season.

The Stafford Sheriff’s Office is encouraging people to lock their cars, by bringing back its “Take It, Hide It, Lock It or Lose It Campaign” from the summer. The idea is simple: Lock your car and hide valuables, or face the possibility of items being stolen. (In June, reporter Scott Shenk wrote about the rise in number of thefts from unlocked cars across the region.)

“The holiday season is always a time when some individuals are stealing items from unlocked cars, either at home or in parking lots while folks are shopping for gifts,” spokesman Bill Kennedy said in an email.

I’ll have more on this campaign in the next few days.