HomeTop StoriesAuthorities in Fontana warn residents of increased 'bench jugging' incidents

Authorities in Fontana warn residents of increased ‘bench jugging’ incidents

Police in Fontana are asking residents to be extra vigilant in light of the increase in “couch jogging.”

Fontana police say “bank jugging” occurs when thieves observe victims withdraw cash and wait for them to arrive at a second location before robbing them.

“In these types of crimes, suspects observe victims as they leave a bank, credit union, ATM or check cashing facility that has visible cash in it, and then pursue them to their next destination,” Fontana PD said on Instagram. “Upon arrival, the criminals seize the opportunity to break into the victim’s vehicle or to immediately commit a robbery.”

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Authorities referred to a specific case of “bank jugging” that took place on July 22, in which a victim who had just withdrawn $1,060 from a Chase Bank branch on Slover Avenue in Fontana had the money stolen from his car after entering the bank. had left.

“[After leaving the bank, the victim] drove to Walgreens on Sierra Avenue and was in about seven to eight minutes,” Fontana police said. “The victim left the company to find that his windshield had been smashed and the envelope of cash had disappeared.”

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In that incident, surveillance footage showed a “newer model” Toyota 4Runner pulling into the parking lot next to the victim shortly after they arrived at the Walgreens. The thief exited the vehicle and used an unknown tool to smash the window and steal the recently withdrawn cash.

The Fontana Police Department outlined several steps individuals can take to minimize the threat of “bench jugging,” including:

  • Keeping an eye on individuals loitering “without purpose” near the parking lot or lobby of a financial institution

  • Maintain focus within the bank; Fontana authorities are advising residents not to use their phones or wear earphones to avoid distractions

  • Securing all cash withdrawn in an inconspicuous bag, such as a briefcase or handbag, rather than the small money envelopes normally provided by banks

  • Ensuring all doors are locked when exiting a vehicle

  • Prevent large sums of money from being left unattended in a vehicle

  • Be aware of any vehicles that may follow you or follow you out of the parking lot

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Residents are urged to call 911 or go to the nearest police or fire station if they believe they are being followed

“Remember: if you see something, say something,” Fontana police said. “Your awareness can help protect you and your community.”

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