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Old 18.05.2011, 11:31
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car break-in in Lausanne yesterday

Well, being from New York and Boston, I should know better really. I stupidly forgot to leave my bag with my wallet, phone, etc at home before going to Vidy for my usual run. I was running late and after parking, tossed my bag in the trunk (what do you call those trunks that have a canvas that goes across the back...) and ran to find my friends.
You know what I am going to report next. 1.5 hours later I found that the back window of my car was broken and my bag stolen.
My friends helped me to call the police and moments later two friendly officers arrived on motorcycles. I explained the situation and 15 minutes later one of the officers left and returned with my bag! Everything was left inside - IDs, credit cards, phone, my kid's i thing-a-ma-jingy. Well, everything except the CHFs, $s, Euros, and change.
The officers kindly escorted me to the main police station in Lausanne where they made a report.
I'm writing all this to help others out there to not make the same mistake. Even if this is CH, things happen. But I have to say, my new Swiss running friends were awfully supportive and the police were really nice guys. Next time I'll know better and hopefully in writing this something similar won't happen to you.
(JSYK, the police advised me to keep that canvas top open so that potential thieves can look inside and find that the trunk is empty. Otherwise, they might just break a window to see what is inside.)
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Old 19.05.2011, 05:42
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Re: car break-in in Lausanne yesterday

I'd still call it a trunk, but a trunk with cargo cover

I do wonder how they uncover your bag so fast! Well, no matter how they did it, it's always a lot better than not getting it back.
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Old 19.05.2011, 07:31
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Re: car break-in in Lausanne yesterday

How did the officer find the bag so fast and where?

My guess is somebody saw you putting your stuff in the trunk and leaving for a run. They acted accordingly.

Good thing is you have all your documents and cards back.
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Old 19.05.2011, 07:56
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Re: car break-in in Lausanne yesterday

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I'd still call it a trunk, but a trunk with cargo cover
It's called a boot, actually .
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Old 19.05.2011, 08:09
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Re: car break-in in Lausanne yesterday

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How did the officer find the bag so fast and where?
I'm not surprised that they found the bag so quickly. The thieves, no doubt, grabbed the bag and emptied the cash. They dumped the bag along with everything else inside it, probably in the bushes or even right on the street.

Switzerland being Switzerland, some helpful Swiss person came along and saw the bag on the ground. They picked it up and handed it in at the nearest police station. Since the bag had ID in it, it was no problem for the police station to identify it.

When the officers called to find out if anything had been found, a quick search on the poster's name is probably all it took to turn up the bag.

Bravo, Swiss Police... \/ and bravo, Swiss passer-by who picked up the bag. \/

Sorry to hear you've lost your cash and have the hassle of replacing a car window, but pleased to hear you got most of your stuff back. Given the circumstances, that's not an entirely bad outcome.
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Old 19.05.2011, 08:53
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Re: car break-in in Lausanne yesterday

Unfortunately, my very strong guess is that the thief was there already and he (let's be sexist) saw you put the bag in the trunk. He then waited until you were gone and broke the window to take the bag. This was not a random checking of cars (especially with the cover in place).

A few points:

You did the right thing by putting the bag in the trunk but sometimes it is just better to push it under the front seat or put it in the back seat on the floor if you can put something over it. This way you are doing everything "out of sight". Or at least, put your purse in a paper shopping bag when getting out of the car so people do not see that it is a purse.

The second point is to be aware when you are getting out of the car to put something in the trunk. Look around to see who might be watching. If someone is, then find another solution.

At Vidy, as elsewhere, there are parking spots that are more in the open than others. Keep this in mind when choosing a spot to park.

You got very lucky this time as others will agree that redoing all of your ID can be costly and a real hassle. And yes, a real thanks to the person who handed in the bag.
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Old 19.05.2011, 11:12
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Re: car break-in in Lausanne yesterday

Totally, someone was keeping watch for fools like me and saw me throw the bag in the trunk. It was another busy day at Vidy, but they must have waited for the right moment and acted quickly. I bet it wasn't someone acting alone, but with a lookout. I was parked in the center of the lot, but near enough to a trail that leads to the woods.

The police officer, BTW, found the bag himself after a quick search around. He immediately knew to head onto the trail in his search.

My child's teacher just told me that her car's back window was broken into at the Theatre de Vidy just 2 weeks ago but nothing was in it.

So someone(s) are regularly lurking around Vidy.

Newcomers are statistically more vulnerable to crime, because it takes a while to figure out where and how cautious to be, and probably because we are more often discombobulated like I was the other night.

But yes, I was lucky to have lost so little! And I found the Swiss police to be the most wholesome fellows - good news if you unfortunately have to deal with a situation like this.
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Old 19.05.2011, 11:25
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Re: car break-in in Lausanne yesterday

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(what do you call those trunks that have a canvas that goes across the back...)
....Ragtop
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Old 23.05.2011, 10:31
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Re: car break-in in Lausanne yesterday

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...

Switzerland being Switzerland, some helpful Swiss person came along and saw the bag on the ground. They picked it up and handed it in at the nearest police station. Since the bag had ID in it, it was no problem for the police station to identify it....
I wouldn't be surprised if it was the thief who dumped the bag at the police station!
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Old 23.05.2011, 12:41
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Re: car break-in in Lausanne yesterday

Thanks for your advice! I also live in Lausanne and i am aware of the fact that stealing from your car on the large parkings lots near the lake is quite common. I always put my stuff in the trunk and pull the canvas over it while i take a walk. I thought that if nobody sees what is in the trunk they won't try to break in. Now i know better!
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Old 24.05.2011, 11:59
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Re: car break-in in Lausanne yesterday

I also live in Lausanne and on my morning runs I see at least 2 or 3 cars with broken windows. After I spoke with some friends I found out that they also have same observations. Seems like car break-in in Lausanne is something common. Don't leave anything in the that could attract attention.
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