Milton police said they had been investigating a string of thefts from unlocked vehicles when the thieves started smashing windows of locked vehicles over the weekend.
Milton officers have been investigating a string of thefts and attempted thefts from parked vehicles since early September, according to a release.
During the overnight hours, people have been checking unlocked vehicles parked in driveways or on the street for anything of value, police said. Over the weekend, officials said several people reported that windows of vehicles were smashed out and items, like purses and electronics, were stolen.
Police said since Saturday there have been five incidents of thieves smashing car windows. The most recent incident happened Monday night.
The chief said the car had an alarm, so he doesn't think anything was taken, but in other cases things like purses, wallets and phone chargers were stolen.
Police Chief Scott Marquardt is asking the community to keep an eye out for their neighbors.
"It's not just my one patrol officer working overnight. It's every newspaper delivery person. It's everyone who's up early for an early-morning job. If they work weird hours and happen to get home from work at 3 o'clock in the morning, those are the folks that will be really helpful if they could let us know if they see anything," Marquardt said.
He said crime like this is unusual in Milton.
"To get to the level of actually smashing windows to take things is a fairly rare event in this city," Marquardt said.
Marquardt said the break-ins have been happening all over the city, not just in one isolated location.
Officials have not identified any suspects.
The Rock County Sheriff’s Department received a number of similar reports over the weekend just outside of the city, according to the release.