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MPD reports numerous auto thefts in West District

There have been at least 14 auto thefts in the West District this week, the Madison Police Department says.

The police department said low-value items like sunglasses and spare change were reported stolen. Vehicles were entered overnight from approximately 10:30 p.m. to 6:30 a.m. Many, if not all, of the vehicles hyad been left unlocked.

The MPD encourages residents to lock their vehicles and not leave valuable items in them.

Madison police bring awareness to open garage burglaries

Madison police bring awareness to open garage burglaries

The Madison Police Department's Burglary Crime Unit hit the streets Thursday to bring community awareness to open garage door burglaries, said police.

According to police, five detectives, one detective sergeant and two analysts went to sections of the city that have had an increase in open garage burglaries. In three hours, police contacted over 60 homes with open garage doors to bring the problem to residents' attention.

Police believe 2 vehicle crashes involved heroin

Police believe 2 vehicle crashes involved heroin

A man police believe had ingested heroin careened off of Watts Road Wednesday morning and crashed into a light pole, according to a release.

The man was pinned inside his car for a significant amount of time while Madison Fire Department crews worked to get him out, officials said. The 24-year-old suffered serious leg injuries, but was listed in stable condition.

He is expected to be cited for operating while under the influence.

Police are also investigating a second traffic incident that happened Wednesday morning that they believe also involved heroin.

A 29-year-old man was taken to a hospital for observation after he nearly drove a vehicle into the side of a car wash in the 600 block of South Gammon Road around 11:40 a.m., according to the release.

County approves additional funding to increase emergency radio coverage

County approves additional funding to increase emergency radio coverage

The Dane County Board of Supervisors approved an additional $3.75 million in funding Thursday to increase radio coverage in rural areas and inside large buildings, according to a release.

The allocation was approved as part of a larger resolution approving the issuing of bonds to pay for commitments already approved in the 2015 capital budget, officials said. The new funding is in addition to the $3 million already dedicated to improvements in the DaneCom radio system.

News 3 reported in December that parts of DaneCom would be taken offline at the beginning of 2015 to determine if the county’s new emergency communication system was causing emergency radio problems.

Police: Woman drives away from crash on flat tire

Police: Woman drives away from crash on flat tire

A Madison woman faces her fourth drunken driving charge after allegedly driving away from a crash and only stopping because her vehicle would no longer drive, Madison police said.

A former police officer told authorities a red Chevrolet Cavalier crashed into another vehicle at the intersection of Regent and North Park streets around 2:30 p.m. on Dec. 19, according to a release.

The Chevrolet spun around, and the driver attempted to leave south on Park Street, officials said. The former officer followed the vehicle until it had to stop in the 1200 block of Park Street due to a flat tire and structural damage.

Officers contacted the driver, Debora Lichtfeld, 49, of Madison, and they said they could smell a strong order of alcohol, according to the release. Lichtfeld told police that she had consumed nothing except antibiotics.

Thefts from cars spike in Madison

Thefts from cars spike in Madison

Madison police are urging residents to look out for a "Grinch" who might be breaking into vehicles in parts of Madison.

Numerous thefts from cars were reported in the Dudgeon-Monroe neighborhood Monday, and police said that so far this month they've had more than 30 theft from auto complaints, and 50 since Nov. 1.

Police are asking residents to look out for suspicious people in your neighborhood during all hours of the day. They said usually just one or two people are responsible for dozens of thefts.

Residents are also asked to lock their cars and to not leave gifts in plain view.

Police: Madison man's bike worth thousands stolen

Police: Madison man's bike worth thousands stolen

Police said a west Madison man's bike worth thousands of dollars was stolen this week.

Madison police said a man reported Tuesday that his bike was stolen from a reportedly secure basement area of his apartment building on the 500 block of South Midvale Boulevard.

The Trek bike is outfitted for winter riding, and with its added components, is worth an estimated $3,950, according to the report.

The bike was stolen sometime Monday or Tuesday, police said. The man reported it stolen Tuesday at 9 a.m.

Police provided a picture Thursday of a bike similar to the one that was stolen. The bike has Bar Mitts, which are a brand of special mittens outfitted on the handle bars. It also has a Carbon brand handle bar, Quartz brand pedals and a homemade mud guard fashioned from a milk jug on the rear tire.

Anyone with information is urged to contact Madison Area Crime Stoppers at 266-6014.