ARLINGTON, Va. - We have heard of thieves targeting cars for their airbags, but also for their car doors? An Arlington man woke up to find his car stripped of both outside of his apartment complex.
Alex Tessler's 2015 Honda Accord was parked in a private lot that requires a permit when it was hit along with another vehicle overnight by thieves.
He said he was shocked when he came out to walk his dog Friday morning and found the passenger side doors of his car removed. The airbag was also taken. A Honda CRV nearby was also targeted for its airbag.
Both cars were locked, but the thieves smashed the windows and then made off with the parts.
Tessler and the other victim called police. The officer who responded was apparently surprised as well.
"He said I have never seen this before," Tessler said. "He said I have seen chop shops take parts of cars before, but they have never been this blatant in their actions. So he dusted for prints. He said it was clearly the work of professionals. So somebody will get hit, they will get T-boned, and it will be on the right side like my car was.
"The chop shop will order a front side door and a back side door and maybe an airbag because the airbag may have deployed, and they will just go out, they will find it, they will scope out the area, they will grab it and run. It will take maybe five minutes total. They just bring a power drill, unscrew what they need, take off.
"At this point, I'm more concerned about other people in this area. There is a lack of security here and it's a little troubling."
This part of Tessler's apartment complex is apparently not covered by any surveillance cameras, and police did not find any fingerprints. They say they don't have much to go on, so Tessler is stuck with the cost of repairs.
Arlington police said while they do see cases of airbags being stolen, having car doors stolen is a first and is concerning.