Anchorage police are investigating two vehicle thefts during local church services on Sundays earlier this month, both involving outerwear containing car keys taken from storage areas.
APD spokesperson Lt. Dave Parker says in the first theft, on Oct. 7, a woman hung up her coat at about 9:30 a.m. while attending services at a church on 8th Avenue.
“When services were concluded, she discovered that her coat was missing from the rack as was her silver 2009 Toyota Yaris from the parking lot,” Parker wrote in a Tuesday statement on the thefts.
An Alaska State Trooper recovered the Yaris in Palmer from Bodenburg Creek just after noon with front-end and flooding damage, but no suspects in the theft were found.
In the second theft a week later, another man hung up his jacket in a closet at about 9:30 a.m. while attending services with his wife, this time at a church on O’Malley Road. The jacket was missing when the man left the church at 10:45 a.m. as was his vehicle, a blue 2006 Chevy 1500 pickup with a camper shell and Alaska license plate EZW171.
APD is warning people not to leave keys and other valuables in coat pockets, where thieves might easily locate them. Thieves also target unattended vehicles with their engines left running, as people warm up their cars during the winter months.
Contact Chris Klint