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Blotter: Suspicious Man Enters Planet Fitness, Theft From Car Discovered

The following information has been provided by the Marple Township Police Department. Any arrests or charges mentioned do not indicate guilt or conviction.

BROOMALL–On Dec. 20 at approximately 11:42 p.m., Marple police responded to Planet Fitness on Springfield Road for a reported theft from a car discovered.

Upon arrival, police spoke with the vehicle owner who stated she came to the gym at approximately 10:30 p.m. and did not notice anyone else in the parking lot when she exited her vehicle.

When the woman returned to her vehicle, someone had smashed the passenger side front window of her vehicle and removed her jacket and purse, which were sitting on the front seat of the car, according to the report.

Numerous credit cards, debit cards, $300 in gift cards, gas card and $120 were inside her purse, according to the report. When the woman began to cancel her cards, as advised by police, she was informed that someone had already started to use them.

Police observed the vehicle’s window was completely broken out with pieces of glass on the ground. According to the report, police had responded to the gym earlier at approximately 11:22 p.m. for a suspicious man wearing a gray hooded sweatshirt and black pants.

According to the report, the man came into the gym and was asking numerous questions. The man had appeared to be preoccupied by looking around at everything in the gym and not directly involved in the conversation with an employee, according to the report.

The employee was in the middle of answering one of his questions when he interrupted her and said he would come back tomorrow and walked out the door, according to the report.

According to the report, the employee observed the man go out to the parking lot and watched him try to open a few car doors. Upon arrival, police observed about 10-15 cars in the lot in front of Planet Fitness. A black vehicle occupied by a woman on a cell phone was the only person in the lot, according to the report. Police checked the area with negative results.

JT January 08, 2013 at 01:27 PM
No camera's in the parking lot or inside the gym? This is not the first time something like this has happened and one of these times, someone coming out of the gym may find the person in the act and the outcome will not be just a loss and damage to property. Marple should require cameras for any location that is open after say 8 pm and have them available to be viewed over the internet by the police.
19008 Resident January 08, 2013 at 01:49 PM
I agree! Why wouldn't Planet Fitness want a security camera inside particlarly when late at night employees might be alone by themselves. And why doesn't the township mandate security cameras not only at PF but other locations such as Lawrence Park Shopping Center? Not only would this aid the police in identifying criminals but also possibly discouring them from happening.
MarpleResident January 08, 2013 at 01:58 PM
"jacket and purse, which were sitting on the front seat of the car" If you invite someone to rob you, it will happen.
Arch Angel January 08, 2013 at 04:33 PM
Want to get your car robbed?Park in the Planet Fitness Lot!They DON"T CARE!!!!!!!!
JT January 08, 2013 at 05:55 PM
Interesting comment. Do you know of more cases that have not been reported on Patch and some towns when there is a problem do make the owner do something or they shut them down. They also charge the business for repeat calls so the tax payers do not foot the bill.
L. Ferguson January 08, 2013 at 06:02 PM
POLICE SHOULD PRESSURE THE REALITOR/OWNER OF PROPERTY TO INSTALL CAMERAS. SINCE WHEN IS A CAR A SAFE PLACE TO LEAVE VALUABLES? I DON'T UNDERSTAND WHY ANYONE WOULD LEAVE WALLETS, CASH, DIAMOND TIARRA'S ....IN A CAR!
JDBroomall January 08, 2013 at 09:49 PM
What makes you think the police have any authority to mandate a private business owner installs cameras? The reality is that police have a limited role in crime prevention and mainly fall on the reactive side after the crime has been committed. There is no duty for them to protect you, your business or your property. Don't blame the property owner or the police... How about some common sense? Don't leave your purse on your front seat at 11pm at night in a parking lot.
SAC January 09, 2013 at 12:14 AM
JDBroomall... agreed about common sense. Totally NOT thinking!!!! But this does happen often in that parking lot.
Newtown Square 5512 January 09, 2013 at 08:18 AM
According to the report, the employee observed the man go out to the parking lot and watched him try to open a few car doors. Enough said...
MarpleResident January 09, 2013 at 08:08 PM
"some towns when there is a problem do make the owner do something or they shut them down. They also charge the business for repeat calls so the tax payers do not foot the bill." Where? Blaming a business owner for savages committing crime near their business or extorting money from business owners to pay for security cameras is dumbest thing I ever heard. Typical "the problem isn’t the problem" and "spend other peoples' money" mentality. Last time I checked, there were TONS of crimes caught on video and very few convictions.
jimmy wildwood January 09, 2013 at 10:20 PM
Agreed. plus planet fitness has free lockers for you, just bring a lock. There will always be someone, somewhere (even in church) who will take your things if they can. As for cameras. PF does have cameras inside, lots. Sadly, most video doesn't tell you "who", but rather "what" and "when" unless its manned by an operator with the ability to zoom on the face.
JT January 10, 2013 at 04:51 AM
They should want to place the cameras for the protection of their customers and their workers. I see them at all of the Wawa's, 7 11, Wal Mart lot and McDonald's because of their late hours. There are more convictions with cameras than not and persons wanting to break into a car will find a better place without security. Does the gym have free secure lockers in the store? Did the person in the car using their cell phone see anything?

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