Ballantyne woman wants more security patrols after car broken into at gym

“It makes me very scared; I feel very violated.”
A Ballantyne woman wants you to see the photos tonight of her car. Her back window smashed in just minutes after she went inside her local YMCA.
Published: Aug. 1, 2022 at 5:49 PM EDT
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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - A Ballantyne woman wants others to see the photos of her car following a break-in.

Her back window was smashed in just minutes after she went inside her local YMCA. It isn’t the first time this gym has been targeted by criminals going after members’ cars.

She wants what happened to her to be a cautionary tale to others; thieves can strike anywhere at any time.

It’s why she would like to see more patrolling in the parking lot and some added security to feel safe while people work out.

“It makes me very scared; I feel very violated,” Jennifer Campbell said.

She still has a feeling of uneasiness after her car was broken into Saturday afternoon while she worked out at the Morrison Y.

“I realized my window was down, or I thought my window was down, and as I got closer and closer I realized that the window had been busted out and my purse was stolen. I was shocked,” Campbell said.

She said the theft happened around 2:15 p.m. Saturday after she walked into the gym. By 2:45 p.m., her credit card company was already calling; someone attempted to spend over $500 at Walmart.

“I didn’t even connect the dots that that phone call from American Express was due to my card being stolen,” Campbell said. “I thought it was something totally unrelated.”

What happened to Campbell has happened to others.

WBTV obtained calls for service records from the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department showing 11 vehicle larcenies at this location since January, with most happening during the middle of the day.

CMPD Calls for Service at the Morrison Family YMCA between January 1st 2022 and August 1st 2022
CMPD Calls for Service at the Morrison Family YMCA between January 1st 2022 and August 1st 2022(CMPD)

In July alone, there were four break-ins, with most happening in the last few weeks.

“There must be something more that we can do,” Campbell said. “Saying that this happens on a regular basis or saying that this is just something we’ve gotten used to in our community is just not something we can tolerate.”

Along with locking doors and putting away belongings, Nationwide Insurance suggests people transfer their valuable items before arriving at the parking lot because thieves generally watch to see what people are doing before breaking into cars.

“Definitely would do things differently. I didn’t know that this was a known issue at the ‘Y’ so yeah I have a much smaller purse and I carried in with me today during my class,” said Campbell.

The YMCA Charlotte released a statement saying: “While we are disappointed to hear that a member experienced a theft from their vehicle in a parking lot on our property, we do offer safety measures and reminders to anyone visiting our branches. At the branch where the incident occurred, we have signage displayed throughout the parking lot and at entrances to the branch to remind our members and visitors not to leave valuables in their vehicle. We offer free lockers for our members, as well as locks that can be borrowed. We encourage visitors to our facilities, and all public facilities, to be mindful of these reminders, as well as CMPD’s tips on safety. Safety and security of those we serve is our top priority.”

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