News in Brief |

News in Brief

Jeffrene Fowler, LIFT-UP operations manager, takes a phone call as she helps clients at the Rifle office last week. (Kelley Cox/Post Independent)

Car thefts on rise in GlenwoodCar thefts in Glenwood Springs are on the rise, and vehicle owners are making it easy for thieves.We are doing everything except holding the door open for them, said Glenwood Springs Police Chief Terry Wilson.Between Oct. 8 and Nov. 9 eight vehicles were stolen in Glenwood Springs, bringing this years total to date to 47. As long as Wilson has been on the GSPD hes never seen a run like this.The last two months have been a real bums rush, Wilson said.In 2005 there were only 36 reported stolen vehicles, in 2004 there were 49, and with more than a month to go in 2006 Wilson expects this to be the highest year yet.Weve just been getting hounded by theft this year, Wilson said.Wilson indicated that in recent years activity may have been focused on one area, but this year doesnt seem to have any patterns.Its happening all over the community, Wilson said.Most of the vehicles have been recovered around town, some as far away as Carbondale and Aspen. One vehicle was even recovered in Mexico.Neighboring communities like Aspen and Carbondale havent seen an increase in auto thefts like Glenwood Springs. According to Patrol Sgt. Gary Kalkman of the Aspen Police Department, its the same old thing. Out of the 20 vehicles reported stolen in Aspen, the keys were left in the vehicle by the owner in all of them, Kalkman said.In the past 20 years, of the stolen vehicles maybe one car didnt have the keys in it, he said.Both officers said that in a majority of the cases, the keys were in a hide-a-key set inside or outside of the vehicle and were not instances where the key was actually in the ignition. However, Chief Wilson stated that the criminal will take a few extra seconds to look for the key if theyve already gotten inside the car.Rifle has seen an average year of auto theft with 25 reported from Jan. 1 to Nov. 1 of this year. That number is the same as in 2005 for the same period of time.The GSPD did have an arrest last month in one case, but the majority of the cases have yielded no suspects. (Glenwood Springs Post Independent)

Fowler gets a LIFT-UPWhen Jeffrene Fowler was going through a hard time, she turned to LIFT-UP of Garfield County for help. Now, shes the operations manager at LIFT-UPs headquarters in Rifle, where she has worked for the past 13 years.Fowler, 50, manages the day-to-day operations, which include coordinating emergency services for all five offices from Carbondale to Parachute, and overseeing the food pantry and the thrift store.While the office is always bustling, this time of year is especially busy with the holiday season.Its busy right now from about October to Christmas, Fowler said. In Rifle alone, we serve about 40 to 50 families per month.On this day, she is busy taking last-minute registration for Thanksgiving distribution of food baskets which are being distributed today, Nov. 20.The Aspen Times, Aspen, Colo.

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