Video captures ‘slider crime’ as suspect swipes SUV at Minneapolis gas station

Video captures ‘slider crime’ as suspect swipes SUV at Minneapolis gas station

Video captures 'slider crime' as suspect swipes SUV at Minneapolis gas station

Security video shows a new Twin Cities crime trend in action.

Crime prevention specialists are calling them “slider crimes.” They say it often happens when suspects block another car and then one of them will come up along the passenger side door, quickly slide into the car — sometimes with the driver still present — and steal any valuables they can grab and then disappear.

In other instances, like one from Monday in Minneapolis, suspects slide into the driver’s seat and steal the car.

“I didn’t hear a thing. I didn’t see a thing, until all of a sudden the car takes off,” John Schwietz, who fell victim to the slider crime in Minneapolis this week, told 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS.

In his case, he pulled into a gas station at West 54th Street and Lyndale Avenue South to top off his tank. Before he could get the nozzle inserted, a black car pulled alongside his SUV, and a suspect got into the driver’s seat and took off.

“In a crass sort of way, I kind of admired the efficiency of it. I mean, it was shocking how quickly that happened,” Schwietz said with a smile. He’s able to laugh about it a bit now as police found his SUV.

We first told you about this crime strategy earlier this week, connecting with Ramsey County Sheriff’s Office crime prevention deputy Alicia Ouellette.

“They’re taking those quick little seconds to slide right in, grab and go,” Ouellette said. “Where somebody’s driving up along beside you and I am looking away, they’re over here and they’re going through the passenger side of my car and I’m paying my gas. So that’s the hard part.”

Ouellette said the suspects are looking for valuables such as cell phones, computers, purses and even driver’s licenses, which can, in some cases, lead to identity theft.

She adds the best advice for people is to be “aware of their surroundings, take all your valuables and lock your car doors.”