Update: Burglars hit Dish parking lot again


Burglars got away with personal items and cash valued at $7,100 in a series of auto burglaries on Friday and Sunday, Feb. 10 and 12, at the Dish parking area along Alpine Road, according to an updated report from the San Mateo County Sheriff's Office.

Among the estimated losses in the window-smashing and burglary of five vehicles:

■ $2,700 in the theft of a Prada purse, Louie Vuitton wallet, iPhone, $150 in cash and $300 in gift cards.

■ $2,300 in the theft of a purse, wallet, leather book holder and $300 in cash.

■ $1,300 in the theft of a purse, wallet and $1,000 in cash.

■ $500 in the theft of purse, wallet, $50 in cash and $100 in gift cards.

■ $300 in the theft of a backpack, headphones and a jacket.

The dirt parking area at the Alpine Road intersection with Piers Lane is popular with people hiking trails near The Dish, the radio-telescope antenna on undeveloped Stanford University land that overlooks Interstate 280.

Deputies reported a similar incident involving six vehicles in September 2011. As on that occasion, the raids took place in the morning. The sheriff's report this time shows a timestamp of 9:22 a.m. for the Feb. 10 incidents, and 10:37 a.m. for the Feb. 12 incident.

"That area is being hit constantly," Lt. Larry Schumaker of the Sheriff's Office said. He advised hikers to lock their vehicles, close their windows and not leave valuables in plain sight.

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2 people like this
Posted by member
a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Feb 14, 2012 at 7:16 pm

I have hiked the dish for year, parking on Alpine Road. I no longer have anything of value in my car. I stick my driver's license in my back pocket and leave my purse at home. If I ever need to have my purse, I remove anything important and minimize the cash. Everything goes into the trunk while I'm still at home so no one sees me hide it in the trunk. It takes a bit of planning ahead, but is much less bother than dealing with a breakin.

It's too bad that we must take such precautions, but losing credit cards, drivers license and the rest is just too overwhelming to risk. Let the hiker beware!

Like this comment
Posted by DC McGlynn
a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Feb 15, 2012 at 9:55 am

Where is the Menlo Park police, California Highway Patrol, San Mateo Co Sheriff, Stanford Police ** when you need them .. ? This has been a long time problem at this site.. and the police seem to be unable/unwilling/unmotivated (pick one or more) to deal effectively with the problem..

To local Police Management .. Please get out there and PREVENT these crimes, catch, prosecute and remove these people from our town.

DC McGlynn

PS. The City of Menlo Park response to the armed gunman on Sand Hill Road last week is laughable.. If he was outside the police dept they would have dealt with him .. or a school.. Pathetic !

** How bloated this system is .. how many police depts do you need .. ?

PPS. I am pro police .. son of a 35 year veteran ! Member 11-99 Foundation. (for the right reasons, I might add).

Like this comment
Posted by Scholar
a resident of Menlo Park: Sharon Heights
on Feb 15, 2012 at 12:49 pm

Yeah, how about putting up surveilance cameras monitored by the PD

2 people like this
Posted by Joe
a resident of Menlo Park: Allied Arts/Stanford Park
on Feb 15, 2012 at 1:38 pm

Yeah, let's make this into a police state. Then only the people with something to hide will be worried.

In this case, the people who did have something to hide -- their purses and digital gear -- did not do so. That is foolishness if not neglect, given the reputation of this area. A police state is not the answer to foolishness. A wiser and more cared for population is the answer, though that takes time and takes thinking of oneself as one's brother's keeper and is thus not a serious consideration.

Like this comment
Posted by Ol' Homeboy
a resident of Menlo Park: Allied Arts/Stanford Park
on Feb 15, 2012 at 2:41 pm

Where's one of those mountain lions when you need them?

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Posted by Bob
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Feb 15, 2012 at 3:20 pm

Hidden surveilance cameras with a posting that actions are being recorded would most certainly be a deterrent to thieves having to think twice before breaking into cars.

2 people like this
Posted by Responsible
a resident of Menlo Park: Stanford Hills
on Feb 15, 2012 at 9:51 pm

I hike the dish and park the too. The SM Sherrif has set up a number of surveillance efforts yet to no effect. Obviously, by parking there you are gone for a significant window of time. In speaking with the officers it is a "crime of opportunity". While we can sit here and ask that "they" do more and suggest "they" set up cameras and assorted postings to "surely detour" these folks from doing this, "we" can take responsibility for our actions in this evolution of this environment (new crime spree) and keep valuable out of plain sight. Take the effort and leave your expensive purses, iPads, wallets and other items out of sight. Cops are doing what they can with the resources available and cameras to watch the crime happen with no assurance that an image will produce and arrest (Banks are known to have surveillance cameras and yet they still get robbed). I, for one, am not volunteering to be the guine pig if when the cameras are installed. As noted above, I will continue to be cognizant of my environment and be responsible with and for my valuables.

Like this comment
Posted by DC McGlynn
a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Feb 16, 2012 at 9:32 am

When is Lt. Larry Schumaker going to catch these guys .. Have you ever heard of a 'sting' operation.. yes it works..

Like this comment
Posted by CG
a resident of Woodside School
on Feb 17, 2012 at 9:31 am

I also hike the Dish regularly and *never* leave anything in my car. I can't believe these folks left so many valuables inside.

Also there was no mention of car alarms...were they on or not? I always set my alarm.

2 people like this
Posted by bob
a resident of Woodside: other
on Feb 21, 2012 at 12:50 pm

DC Why don't we have people put valuables in their trunks before we waste time and money on cameras.

Like this comment
Posted by Menlo Voter
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Feb 21, 2012 at 5:48 pm

C'mon bob, why would we have people take responsibility for safeguarding their own belongings? Next thing you'll be saying is that we should all lock our doors when we leave the house.

Like this comment
Posted by member
a resident of Menlo Park: Park Forest
on Jun 27, 2016 at 3:35 pm

In May 2012 my car was broken into while I was walking at Stanford Dish (Alpine Rd) parked across from horse park. I actually heard someone/thing down the bank while leaving my car, thought it odd so looked, but saw nothing bc too much brush cover. Now, I think they were hiding there, waiting to strike. They took my entire briefcase with three passports I had just picked up. Now, I have a TILE in the briefcase so I can track it. I called cops, took photos, gave a statement, and searched the brush for the discarded briefcase. Cops said, “We have car break ins here all the time, have had for years, never find anything/catch anyone.” The credit card company reported two declined charges: first at Shell on Tower Rd in San Mateo. I had lived near there so knew it, but thought it odd because location is remote and hidden. The thieves had hopped directly onto Rte 280N at Alpine Rd entrance, exited Tower Rd, and tried to get gas. I drove with a broken car window, but searched Shell stations garbage can's and asked Shell station for camera footage: Shell on Tower Rd in San Mateo was not helpful. No luck at lost and found for second declined charge location (Macy’s, Hillsborough) either. Then, we realized that Shell Station on Tower Road is very close to Juvenile Hall at 21 Tower Rd, San Mateo, and a straight run down Rte280/Alpine Rd parking for Stanford Dish. I should modify my report with the police, in case that helps, and tell people along the Dish path to pass the information on: maybe it's Juvenile Hall releases, not East Palo Alto. But I don't walk there anymore bc I don't want my car broken into :))

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