4 cars stolen from Jasper Co. district office - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

4 cars stolen from Jasper Co. district office

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RIDGELAND, SC (WTOC) -

Ridgeland Police say five people, four juveniles and one adult, damaged the Jasper County School District's transportation building and stole four of the district's cars from the gated lot.

This is the latest in a slew of break ins to hit Ridgeland in the past couple weeks, and it has a lot of residents on alert.

"We have an alarm system in my house, cars are locked completely, and neighborhood watch; that's the main thing we are doing for our security," said Kiran Shah.

Shah and his wife have lived in Ridgeland for six years. He says they've always felt safe, until recently.

His neighbor's car was broken into two days ago, and last night the district office was the target. The Shahs lives right across the street.

According to the district, the five people somehow found their way into the building, then they used a fire extinguisher to bust the transportation and operation office door open.

"They actually located the keys for the vehicles," said Darryl Owens, transportation director.

The used the keys to steal a 2002 Ford Explorer, 2008 Ford Fusion, 2012 Chyrsler 200, and a 2012 Chevy Impala. They caused nearly $30,000 worth of damage in the process.

This is an upsetting situation for the district, especially since they've taken extra measures to deter thieves.

They've installed more than four new surveillance cameras, added additional lighting and a new fence for the purpose of protecting the cars.

"Even with those measures in place, somehow you still can not stop a thief," said Owens.

Police say fortunately, the people responsible were caught. But some townspeople, like Shah, say they are convinced the crime spree is far from over.

"I'm a little bit nervous, not scared though," he said. "Just nervous."

Port Royal Police are assisting Ridgeland with this case. They're the ones who arrested the four suspects early Wednesday morning, outside of Parris Island.

Three of the cars have been found, one is severely damaged and they're still trying to find the fourth one.

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