More than a dozen vehicles broken into, one stolen in Pearl Dist - KPTV - FOX 12

More than a dozen vehicles broken into, one stolen in Pearl District car prowl

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Vehicle captured on surveillance video sneaking into the parking garage. (Courtesy: The Edge Lofts) Vehicle captured on surveillance video sneaking into the parking garage. (Courtesy: The Edge Lofts)

The property manager for The Edge Lofts says more than a dozen people were hit by car prowlers in the Pearl District Thursday night. Tenants and people parking in the REI structure had their windows smashed, and one man even had his car stolen.

Piggybacking is too easy says Michael Cordova, whose car was stolen Thursday night.

“I think those garages are easy to get into by following someone in,” he said.

Jimmy Songvilay, Kin Living Property Manager, showed FOX 12 surveillance video captured Thursday night of a car sneaking in through the exit driveway and into the garage.

“It’s frustrating, yeah, and you feel for them that one of their neighbors, the residents, didn’t take that time to make sure the building was secure after they left the building,” Songvilay said. 

Songvilay first got a call from worried tenants, who notified him of the car prowl.

Not only do Portland police officers say cars had been broken into, but Cordova says his Honda Fit was stolen and driven right out of the garage. He says he got a call from police the next morning, saying they found his car - before he even knew it was gone.

“I guess the luckiest kind of stolen car call you could get,” Cordova said.

Police say they took 27-year-old Christopher Padilla into custody for unlawful entry into a motor vehicle.

“For the most part, it was just a mess they had in the back seat they had full of backpacks and shoes and empty liquor bottle,” Cordova said.

Surveillance video from The Edge Lofts garage shows the Honda Fit being driven out, along with what appears to be the same car that snuck in. In the commercial side of the garage is where the rest of the cars were hit.

“Typically, I leave my car unlocked and no valuables stored inside the car for exactly this reason,” said Joseph Pellico, an REI employee whose car was rummaged through.

Pellico says he was luckier than most. Though someone was inside his car, he says thankfully his windows were still intact.

“I was relieved, but I was still sad though. A lot of my coworkers, their cars had been vandalized,” Pellico said.

He says seven REI employees were affected.

A number that’s bound to go up, Songvilay says, if people aren’t taking proper precautions.

“If you walk around the Pearl, you’ll see glass shatter all over the streets and you feel bad for the person. And I think it just comes with the territory of where we live,” Songvilay said.

Police advise people to keep valuables out of their cars and everything out of sight to avoid crimes like these.

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