Car broken into at TTC

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leboyd's picture
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Joined: 11/09/2012
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Car broken into at TTC

Hi all, I'm new to this forum, but wanted to find out if anyone has ever had their car broken into while at Disney? My husband and I are Florida resident passholders and have been to Disney 40+ times. Last weekend, we were there for the Fantasyland passholder preview and our Ford Explorer was parked in the TTC as we planned to head out after the event. We didn't get back home in Jacksonville, FL until about 9:00pm that night and just brought all the bags in. The next morning, we discovered what had happened. This is the first negative thing that has ever happened to us at Disney and needless to say, it has put a major damper on our "magic feelings". Our Christmas light trip is planned for the end of November and I'm not even looking forward to it now. If anyone has heard of this happening to someone else, would appreciate the info.

MrHub's picture
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Well first of all welcome to WDWForGrownups. Sorry your joining us on such a sour note.

Secondly, I have never actually heard of it happening, but I'm sure it does from time to time, and was your car broken into or did you accidentally leave it unlocked and someone went threw it? If it was broken into, I would have thought you would have noticed something when you went to get in it. Could you explain what exactly happened that you say it was broken into, what did you notice the next day & did you notify the proper Authorities?

This happens all the time around here in waves, but 99 out of 100 times, all the vehicles were left unlocked. Thieves go for the "easy score" they don't usually want to take the time or risk being seen breaking into a vehicle. They walk around threw parking lots looking for the unlocked vehicles and grab what ever is loose, change, sunglasses, laptops, tablets, GPS's, pocketbooks, anything small and easy to grab!

Don't let this unfortunate incident ruin your love for Disney, it's not their fault.

leboyd's picture
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We do not think we left it unlocked, as that is just automatic, but I suppose it is possible. There was no sign of forced entry but the Orange County Sheriff's Department told me that they have had several recent reports of theft in auto's with no visible sign of forced entry. All were older models with keyless entry, which ours has. The reason we didn't notice at first is because they put everything back as it was - all bags and cases zipped, just as we had left them. The way we discovered it was my husband's expensive cologned was taken from his shave kit so he noticed that when he went to put it on the next day. My larger purse was zipped in our duffle, and was still there when we returned home. Inside was my wallet with a JC Penney card, Shell gas card and Flexible spending Mastercard. They stole those as well but left my checkbook. Fortunately I had driver's license, debit and credit card with me. They managed to get $30 on my Shell card and $2900 on the JCP card before the next morning. I did immediately file reports with Disney Security and the Orange County Sheriff's Department. I think we may have been targeted as we were parked at the far end, in the way back, and had a VERY large pick-up truck parked to our left which stood out a good 6 ft. past our vehicle. In other words, someone could have stood at the rear of our SUV all day without anyone from the main road (where the trams load) being able to see them. We feel fortunate in that it was a very short trip, just an overnighter, so we didn't have a lot with us. It really could have been much much worse. I just thought that Disney security would have seen someone roaming the parking lot looking to steal. It's just a big puzzle for us so I wanted to see if it had happened to anyone else. I'm sure I will feel better as time goes by and perhaps the Christmas lights will make me feel better mickey

leboyd's picture
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Oh, and thanks for the welcome! Glad to be here clapping

Mase's picture
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Wow...

Well first welcome! Second... most of us here fly down. Some of us do use a rental cars, but I think most stay at their hotels they are staying at. I really hope they find who did this for you guys.

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welcome leboyd to our little piece of Disney heaven. I am so sorry that you had such a bad experience. I am sure that whoever did this was casing the place and unfortunately knew when Disney security was and was not around. But I am with Mrhub don't let this spoil your love of WDW.

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Oh my goodness! Ya know, once the car was opened if they were just standing there carefully going through stuff like they were the owners I'm not surprised no one noticed especially with the way you were parked. That's just crazy though. I'm so sorry it happened to you. I have on occasion heard of other cars getting broken in to over the years, but I haven't had it happen to me.

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Kristen K. wrote:
Oh my goodness! Ya know, once the car was opened if they were just standing there carefully going through stuff like they were the owners I'm not surprised no one noticed especially with the way you were parked. That's just crazy though. I'm so sorry it happened to you. I have on occasion heard of other cars getting broken in to over the years, but I haven't had it happen to me.

Yes, that is what my husband said! They may have acted like they belonged there. However, I don't think they were back there more than 5 minutes because they missed some things I think they would have taken had they seen it. Example, I had a few dollars and a lot of change that was left. Granted it wasn't much but don't all thieves take cash? Plus I had a small jewelry bag in my duffle which they left. It was not expensive jewelry but most thieves take jewelry just in case it is the real thing. I think they just missed it. They did take my spare iPhone charger from my purse though and the pocket clip to my Otter Box AND my husband's Tuscany cologne and aftershave? Just strange IMO. We also think they put everything back as it was because they did not want us to know what had happened right away so that they had a good amount of time to use our cards. We will be more careful in the future.

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Hello and welcome!!! So sorry to hear about your experience at TTC. WE always have a rental car or our own car, and so far, we've never had anything like that happen.

In an unrelated note, I love your avatar picture!!

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azdisneydvc's picture
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The one time we drove to WDW (yes from AZ - planned a cross country road trip), we had someone write something (profanity) on the back window while it was parked in the valet lot. The valets took note and said they would take the charges off - didnt matter as we were DVC members and got free valet anyways. We were staying at AKL when it happended.

The other thing people look for is medication when they break into vehicles/homes. Last summer the house I was staying at in NC was broken into. Nothing was taken. When the sheriffs came by - they said that people have been breaking into homes/vehicles looking for prescription medication, especially pain meds.

Hope this incident doesnt sour your opinion of WDW.

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Yes our vehicle was broken into at Disney ! I just read your post today and it was like reading what my family and I just went through at Disney this week. I found your blog by googling "car robbed at WDW Nov 2012" just to see if anyone else had ever had this happen to them......I was shocked to see your story and the similarities.....

We are not from Florida but we also are passholders and have been to Disney multiple times over the past 12 consecutive years and have NEVER had anything like this happen to us. In fact, the security at Disney was something that we ALWAYS bragged about to others. We would say "you don't have to worry about ANYTHING when you are on Disney's property." But unfortunately we found out the HARD way that there really is no guarantee that you or your property is safe at least in the Disney parking lot.

Our stories are so similar its scary. Obviously the same person or group of people entered our vehicles. For instance, we too have a FORD vehicle. We too were parked at the far end of the lot opposite where you board the tram. We too did not discover we had been robbed until the next morning because our vehicle was left just as we had left it. We returned to our hotel at midnight, exhausted, so we too just brought all the bags in. The next morning, we discovered what had happened because certain items were missing from our bags. We too had perfume stolen among several other high dollar items.

We immediately contacted Orange County authorities and Disney Security to open a case. Disney security told us that they have encountered situations where criminals are using "code grabbers" to grab your security code on your remote keyless entry device when you lock it. We think that's exactly what happened to us. After we realized we had been robbed we started replaying the night before in our head and remembered that when the keyless device was used to lock our vehicle, it sounded like we locked it 3 times but we didn't. Then we thought that someone near us must have locked their vehicle and it sounded similar. Boy do we wish we had looked a little closer before boarding that tram.....

On a side note I will tell you that the Orange County authorities told us that there are criminals who are entering FORD vehicles with a "HARD KEY" also. So I'm not sure which was used in our cases but it is ironic that we were BOTH in FORD vehicles..

This incident occurred the first day of our week long stay. It totally ruined our week. We cant stop thinking about what has happened. But the ONLY thing that gave us ANY joy during our ENTIRE trip was the OSBOURNE CHRISTMAS LIGHTS. If you go back to Disney, be sure to not leave ANYTHING in your vehicle that you CANNOT live without, then head over to the Hollywood Studio Osbourne Christmas Lights Spectacular and it is sure to give you a feeling of JOY and HOPE and at least temporarily help you forget about the terrible people in the world that seek to harm others unnecessarily.

This incident was also our first negative experience that has ever happened to us at Disney and it has DEFINITELY put a major damper on our "magic feelings" also. This was our last week on our passholder tickets and for now we have no plans to purchase any future tickets especially now that we know this SAME thing happened to you just days BEFORE it happened to us. We have given security LOTS of info to help them find the culprits and if justice is not served in this situation I dont know if I can ever return to Disney or encourage others to visit for fear that they TOO will be victims.....

MrHub's picture
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Well if what you say is true, it can happen anywhere. At Disney, at an airport , a school, a mall or a local grocery store, sso I sure wouldn't let the situation stop me from going to Disney becuase if you do, then don't go shopping any where or go to work or anywhere else. Theives are theives and they can strike anywhere. Best thing to do is not leave anything valuable in your vehicle.

Mase's picture
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This is the one reason why I love not having a car at Disney. Sorry this had happened to ya as well.

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leboyd's picture
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mrhub wrote:
Well if what you say is true, it can happen anywhere. At Disney, at an airport , a school, a mall or a local grocery store, sso I sure wouldn't let the situation stop me from going to Disney becuase if you do, then don't go shopping any where or go to work or anywhere else. Theives are theives and they can strike anywhere. Best thing to do is not leave anything valuable in your vehicle.

You are right, it can happen anywhere, especially this time of year. It's just so hard when it happens to you while on vacation, especially in a place like Disney where everything always seems so perfect. It's been 3 weeks and the pain is slowly fading. Unfortunately we had to cancel our trip for next weekend to see the Christmas lights because my husband had to have surgery for an injured leg, but I am already searching the calendar for replacement dates once he is up and running again. I have also gone ahead and renewed our passes which expire December 5th. We have plans to go down Christmas Eve and spend Christmas Day at Epcot. I hope once we return and have a wonderful time, the bad experience will be a distant memory.

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I'm so glad to hear that you're planning your next Disney Trip. mickey You have to focus on the many years of wonderful memories and try to put this bad experience in the past. As much as Disney does to keep us all safe and free from harm, they simply can't stop a bad guy 100% of the time. It's very sad, but bad people are going to do bad things, no matter where they are.

My car has been broken into twice sitting in my driveway. I no longer keep ANYTHING of value in it. I don't even lock it anymore because I would rather have them open the door than break the window. sarcastic I just don't know what this world is coming to sometimes. I'm not sure how I would handle things if I were driving and needed to park in one of the big lots. It would absolutely take some brain power to figure out how to secure stuff if I had suitcases in the car.

I sure hope that they catch these guys soon!

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If you google it, it been going on for years, someone's car is always getting broken into in one parking lot or another and not necessarily broken into, they are being entered, ( mostly vehicles left unlocked). There will always be people doing this. They do this in waves in our jurisdiction, they will hit 10 different business parking lots in one night. Just walk around looking for unlocked vehicles, grab anything loose, and off they go.

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I found this new story today whole sifting through my feeds

http://thedisneyblog.com/2013/01/07/parking-lot-security-safety-troubles-at-walt-disney-world/

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I would think that from the point of view of Disney Security, it is VERY difficult to determine and pick out the crooks. If someone walks up to the vehicle, and got it opened immediately, there's no way someone would be suspicious that the vehicle does not belong to that person. And criminals are smart - they know how to act as if they belong there.

Sure, you could argue that if all that person does is walks up to the car, and then walks away, that may be suspicious. Unfortunately, I've done the same thing to my vehicle. I've been known to walk back to the car to either pick up something from the trunk (my tripod or extra clothing/towels) or to drop off stuff (purchases), and then walk right back into the park. That's the convenience of having a vehicle, that one doesn't have to lug around everything throughout the whole day.

I suppose the only way they can try and prevent this is to figure out where most of these thefts occurred. Knowing that they tend to occur at the far end of the row and most often with Ford vehicles might provide them some place to start looking and to provide extra security. So certainly reporting these crimes if they happened to you should help them determine if there's a pattern to these things.

Having said that, I never, ever, kept anything of value in the car, even when parked at a Disney property. While I have enough confidence that Disney tries its best in keeping things safe, there is no way any organization, including Disney, can prevent petty crimes such as this. It is just impossible. Even inside the parks, I make sure I have my defenses up against pickpockets the same way I would when walking down the street in Chicago.

Zz.

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