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Old 19th November 2020, 10:34   #1
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Default Ever lost something valuable from a parked car?

Hello everyone,
Time and again we have seen news about valuables getting stolen from a parked vehicle. In a recent trend, top variants that come with alloys from the likes of Hyundai, Kia, Toyota, Ford, and others have been targeted, specifically for their alloys in the Northern states. However, in this thread, I am willing our members to talk in particular about incidents that happened to THEM, and on the same note, I want to share something that happened with me yesterday.

I went out to one of the most trusted and highly rated local accessory shop for getting my car speakers changed. Lately, I have started using a simple pouch rather than a wallet to keep the bills, because, ease of disinfection post return. In the car, I keep the pouch in the trim, ahead of the gear-stick as it fits perfectly over there.

Even after many experiments, I was still not liking the sound output. The thought of getting new pairs popped up, hence, I went to the shop and did one blunder of leaving the pouch in the car. However, this was not the first time I left it inside with someone else in the car. I happened to leave it when I paid a visit to my FNG, even at the ASS, and many more instances; probably karma had it that this lad needs to be taught a lesson.

Although, the people working in the car were all trusted by the shop owner, I was constantly beside my car, keeping an eye not only on the pouch but the over work expertise as well. But, there were instances when I went inside the shop and left the person alone. To cut short, when I opened the pouch to draw money, I was shocked to the core. I had 7k INR in cash, taken from home, just for this work. Apart from this, I had more than 2k INR already in the pouch and what I see is 3K INR left in it.

Puzzled me started searching for any bills in the car, pockets and around, even when I was sure that I locked both the zippers of the pouch after putting the money inside. But when opened it, only the outer one was closed. After a lot of hesitation, I finally spoke to the owner that my money some where close to 6.5k INR has been stolen. The people started looking into the CCTV footages but to no avail since the camera could not capture clearly, any movement inside the car.

Under such circumstances, a majority of the business owners would support their guy. But, this is when the owner's honesty came front, he himself came searching for the money. Then called the guy who fit the speakers in car and even asked me to pay only 40%of the amount.

The speaker guy didn't agree, how was he even supposed to. Two other guys also went in the car during the fitting time; one was an extremely old fellow, the other one put in floor mats to show me how they looked. Although, I primarily suspected the speaker guy, now I think it could be anyone of those three.

Mistake number 2:
When I called the cops, the officer asked me about my suspicious one and I named only the speaker guy, rather, I should have named all three of them. Nevertheless, the officer also didn't get anything new and asked me if I was willing to file a case. Heck, I even had the series of bills missing but the owner had already warned me about numerous calls the cops might ask me and him to make but was fully supportive. Lastly, the officer also told me that only if I file a complaint, he would be able to do something and that, again, I would require to pay multiple visits, and no guarantee of me getting back, my hard earned money.

I let go the case thingy because I don't want someone's business and image in the market to suffer because of 6.5k INR, especially when he took a fraction of the brunt, and this is what I told the owner as well.

Now, my idea of sharing this incident here is the presence of a lot of young folks like me in the forum, who can take a lesson from the mistakes, I made and I got a lesson for my life. And heck, why did I take cash with me I still dont get it as I ended up paying by UPI.
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Old 19th November 2020, 11:32   #2
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Default Re: Ever lost something valuable from a parked car?

I learnt the lesson of not leaving anything in the car when it goes for servicing or for any fitment - long ago. Still I had lost a full set tool box and a GPS enabled Charger.

A long time ago when I was a contract engineer for a series of star hotels, I had to sort out a poor audio-visual connectivity in one room. It was booked by a wedding party and they had taken the key with them. As I was in a hurry to sort out the issue, I insisted on getting the master key of the rooms from the CEO. He agreed to part with the key on one condition - that I use the master key personally on my own and not to give it to any one. To cut a long story short, I let myself in using the master key and on entering the room I was horrified to find a set of Jewelries - a diamond necklace included on the bed. It must be the bride's bedroom. I went about my work and patched the cable. In that process I had moved a chair away from where it was.

I locked the door behind me and informed the CEO of what I saw. He was happy that it was me who handled the situation and not any one else. He must have made a mental note of not giving the master key anymore.

The marriage party however realized that someone had entered their room from the way the furniture had moved. But they didn't find any items missing.

Many people treat their cars as second home. Again many years ago I was waiting for some work to be done in my car. The FNG chap was well known to me and as it was getting close to the end of the day and all his staff have left for the day. He suddenly remembered a car delivery to a cantankerous customer. He requested me to drive the customer car to his home and the FNG chap would pick me up from there after he completed the formalities. I agreed and started the car. I found a little grease in the steering. I wanted to look for some tissue in the glove box. I opened the box and to my horror I found a revolver there. I decided not to have anything to do with the owner of that car. I exchanged the cars with the FNG chap and went to the car's home.

The FNG chap told me several stories of forgetful owners leaving behind money, jewelry and expensive trinkets in cars. He made it a point to check the cars before he hands the cars to the mechanics.

Last edited by suhaas307 : 23rd November 2020 at 14:35. Reason: spacing for improved readability
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Old 19th November 2020, 12:15   #3
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Default Re: Ever lost something valuable from a parked car?

That was a lesson learnt Aish_4761. Please remember never to trust anyone blindly this way.

Authorized service centres check every nook and corner before it enters the service area. At least that is what I have experienced. But in FNGs or accessory shops, it is very different. They will not even bother asking you or checking themselves. It is completely up to us to clear everything and handover.
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Old 19th November 2020, 13:38   #4
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Default Re: Ever lost something valuable from a parked car?

Lost a new Sony CD player along with OE speakers, new Exide Matrix Red battery and horns from my car once. Those were the times when CD players were not that common and people mostly had cassette players in their cars. The irony is that even to this date I have the front detachable panel of the HU lying somewhere tucked in my closet!

A few years ago, I lost one USB drive from my car which I accidentally left in the ash tray (since my stereo has a rear USB extension which I have routed to the ash tray for keeping the USB drive out of view) when giving for a service at MASS.

Also, quite some years ago, when there were much fewer cars on our roads, we got 2 wheels of our new Bajaj scooter knocked off at new year's night. Those days, it was a rampant business.
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Old 19th November 2020, 13:48   #5
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Default Re: Ever lost something valuable from a parked car?

Not so much these days, but 10-20 years ago here in Europe radio theft from cars was a real problem. It was one of the reasons, radio’s with code, removable front, revolving fronts (Kenwood Mask) etc came to the market.

These days radio’s are fully integrated so it is becoming more difficult or rather pretty useless to steal them as it almost impossible to re-use them.

So in those days I had quite a few radio’s taken from cars. Which also meant damage to the car as the thieves would smash in a window. Fingers crossed it has been a long time.

Last time my car radio was stolen was around 2010. From our Jeep Cherokee in Kansas City. I had installed just about the cheapest car radio I could find at Best Buy. I think it cost $40 or so. But the thieve smashed in the window, ripped out the centre console to get at the radio. In all $600 worth of damage! And only because I fixed it all myself, rather than have someone do it.

Last time anything got stolen was in Kansas City as well and it was really stupid. We had three cars at the time. But “only” a two car garage. So that is why the Jeep was living outside in front of the house. My wife’s Ford Focus and my Jaguar were always parked in the garage.

One morning I got up and noticed, for some reason I had left the Jaguar out on the drive way. I think I did a little job on it the evening before or so. Had never happened before. When I checked I found I also did not lock it. Both my TomTom GPS and my iPod were gone! So to some extent lucky I did not lock it, at least no damage to the car.

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Old 19th November 2020, 14:42   #6
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Default Re: Ever lost something valuable from a parked car?

I lost many litres of valuable Petrol when I had given it to a hospital valet. The hospital was a reputed one which was more shocking. Never trust these valet guys to safely park your car.
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Old 19th November 2020, 14:56   #7
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Default Re: Ever lost something valuable from a parked car?

I’m almost always careful before I turn in my car for service, but just this once last month, I missed removing my MapMyIndia navigation chip from the system. Continuing to talk to the service advisor, I also missed picking up my pen drive.

Lost both.

I realised this only the next day when I had to use my pendrive. Too late by then ! I did escalate to the service Center GM, but knew it won’t yield anything.

I still regret losing the drive. Lots of files and pictures of family. Gone in a jiff.
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Old 20th November 2020, 11:15   #8
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Default Re: Ever lost something valuable from a parked car?

I haven't but my dad nearly did. He parked the car in the heart of the city while attending a wedding a couple of years back. He had his office bag in the back seat. Someone must have thought it has a laptop and nicked it. Luckily it only had some papers.

The thief broke the rear quarter glass and (assuming) must have walked away and waited for the car alarm to die down. Once that was done, he must have put his hand through the broken glass and taken the bag. Dad came back to the car to find a broken rear quarter glass and his bag missing.

From then on, I never put anything on the seat of the car. Bags that may attract attention are always in the boot or under the front seat.
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Old 20th November 2020, 20:55   #9
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Default Re: Ever lost something valuable from a parked car?

My portable CD player was stolen after the thief having smashed one of the quarter glasses of my car. It was in Dallas and I think it was circa 2003. My car was in covered but open parking just in front of my ground floor apartment. I called the cop and they pretty much said it will be difficult to recover as these were mostly stolen by drug addicts who would have sold it to a pawn shop. And true to their words, it was never recovered.

I learnt my lesson of not leaving anything valuable in my car which is easily visible.
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Old 22nd November 2020, 10:29   #10
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Default Re: Ever lost something valuable from a parked car?

Our car Getz was broken into, but my dad’s colleague lost her laptop. Two people (my dad included) took their laptop when they parked and went for lunch but one of his colleague didn’t. My dad forgot to remind her, proving an expensive incident for her (laptop) and us(car window.)

Another tip: I’ve been told (by public safety officials in LA) not to put something into the trunk/under the seat after parking at busy area as people could be watching and inform their accomplice who’d break into the car.
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Old 22nd November 2020, 12:32   #11
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Default Re: Ever lost something valuable from a parked car?

Just once and it was a big loss

My father parked his car in Kirti Nagar in Delhi and somehow, for the very first time, left the laptop bag on the back seat. Someone smashed the back seat window and got away with the bag.

The bag contained Sony Viao laptop, about 1 lakh cash, two Mont Blanc pens worth about 75k each and other work related documents of his (Which were really important too)

Lesson learnt a very very hard way

Last edited by akhil994 : 22nd November 2020 at 12:35.
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Old 22nd November 2020, 12:40   #12
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Default Re: Ever lost something valuable from a parked car?

We had gone for a trek & had parked the car at the base. On return we found our bag of spare clothes and footwear missing. We checked with locals but it didn't help. Since then whenever I have any thing in the car that can attract someone's attention like an office/laptop bag, sun shades etc. I either transfer it to the boot or tuck it away under the front seat. It has helped so far
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Old 22nd November 2020, 12:46   #13
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Default Re: Ever lost something valuable from a parked car?

Sad to hear you lost your money , however this will only make you wiser. I had to pay huge price. Not from car theft , but from something else.

One thing I would like to add from my experience , is that if you are attending a wedding ( since the season is around the corner) do not leave any valuables inside. Weddings are prime target for car thieves. As they know they will hit jackpot sooner or later with jewelleries. Preferably take your beater car if you have, to not attract unwanted attention.
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Old 22nd November 2020, 14:32   #14
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Default Re: Ever lost something valuable from a parked car?

A similar situation happened with my brother. On an official visit to Chennai he had taken the taxi to meet a business contact. He had left his laptop bag in the back . When he returned , the bag had gone. The driver had no clue. He had to file an FIR since it was an official laptop. Enquiry didn't give any leads and it was closed. Since then I always lock the laptop in the trunk before stepping out of the car.
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Old 22nd November 2020, 15:27   #15
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Default Re: Ever lost something valuable from a parked car?

I got this miniature VW Van from VW's Wolfsburg factory's gift shop and stuck it on my dashboard. Unfortunately, forgot to remove it while giving the car for service

I mean why would anyone even steal it,it wasn't a costly item. But meant a lot to me.
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Last edited by AutoConsultant : 22nd November 2020 at 15:28. Reason: Typo
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