HCPD warns of car break-ins, one victim says he's "slightly violated"

Just in time for those packed Black Friday parking lots, car break-ins are on the rise in Horry County. It's not just the shoppers who are targets this holiday weekend, it's the people in town visiting too. In the Waterford Plantation neighborhood of Carolina Forest, many who parked their cars on the driveways or sidewalks of their families' homes Tuesday night had a rude awakening Wednesday morning.

"I was told when I called 9-11, that 11 other calls were made from around my street," Zach Mathis said.

Mathis came out to his blue Toyota Four Runner and upon getting into his car, found his center console disheveled and papers everywhere.

"Papers, my insurance card, everything was over the front seat and my center console was open and glove box was open."

Mathis said he feels "slightly violated," but is glad whoever broke into his car didn't get away with much.

CNN reports each year, $1.255 billion in personal items and accessories are stolen from vehicles.

Horry County Police have offered these tips in the past about avoiding car break-ins:

-When you get home, before you get out of your vehicle, take 30 seconds and remove the valuables you have in your car. Take the time to remove these items.

-If you have a garage door opener, make sure you bring that inside with you as well. If somebody breaks into your car and gains possession of your garage door opener, at the very least, they now have access to your garage and everything in it.

-Make sure you lock and secure your vehicle. A would-be thief does not want to make noise and attract attention to themselves if they don't have to.