The Chattanooga Police Department is reminding the community to lock up their vehicles and other property during the fall and winter months.

Officials say property theft crimes are on the rise in Chattanooga, and that they tend to increase around the area as temperatures drop.

Chattanooga Police say they have responded to several theft calls in just the last week. 

Channel 3 obtained surveillance video that shows three men lurking in several neighborhoods in North Chattanooga, Signal Mountain, and East Ridge.

Police say the men are connected to at least six car break-ins in the last week, and in one case, the thieves got away with a gun.

Officials say during the colder months, many people like to warm up their cars and leave them unattended, which is a bad habit that thieves hope to capitalize on.

Compared to this time last year, reported property theft crimes are up by more than 1,000 cases. This includes reported cases at homes and cars.

Police have a few tips on how to keep your property safe:

  • Lock It - Lock your vehicle every time you leave it unattended
  • Hide It - Hide your valuables
  • Hold It - If you can't lock it or hide it, then hold it and keep your valuables with you.

If you have any information about thefts in the area, you are urged to call Chattanooga Police at 423-698-2525.