Crime: Motor vehicle burglary

Victim: Ryan Miller

Date: Wednesday, May 23

Time: around 1:30 a.m.

Location: 10900 block of Wonderland Trail


While the rest of the neighborhood was sleeping like a baby, Ryan Miller’s baby was crying.

Miller’s wife had got up to calm the couple’s fussy 6-month-old. She heard a car driving away outside, but didn’t think much of it and went back to bed.

When Miller opened the door to his car the next morning, he found that someone had taken his satellite radio. As he checked out the rest of his car, it didn’t look like anything else was missing, even though there were things like sunglasses and CDs in plain sight.

“I didn’t notice anything until I got behind the wheel to start the car,” Miller says. “That’s when I realized someone had messed up the steering column, probably trying to steal the car.”

Miller says it looks like the thief was in the process of stealing the vehicle when something scared him or her off. He thinks it might have been his noisy infant that did the trick.

“They may have heard the baby inside and gotten nervous. Or maybe they saw a light go on when my wife went in there,” he says. “For whatever reason, they got distracted.”

Normally, Miller and his wife keep their vehicles behind an iron gate in their driveway, but due to some construction being done on their house, the driveway was blocked by a dumpster. So they had to park their cars outside the gate.

He also normally keeps his car locked. But this night he had forgotten to do so.

“Three hundred and sixty-five days out of 365 days, I’m going to lock my car. I’m normally pretty good about that,” Miller says. “But this night, I remember not locking my door. Maybe the kids ran out, and I got distracted. Whatever it was, I didn’t lock it.”

But that won’t be a problem anymore. The house construction is complete, and Miller says it’s probably just the thing to keep his car safe.

“The ironic thing is that we were constructing a garage to put our cars in at night,” Miller says.

Dallas Police Cpl. Terri Smith says that if it can be avoided, you shouldn’t leave your car on the street or in your driveway at night. And though Miller was lucky that the thief didn’t take anything but the radio from his car, Smith says it’s still a good idea to take expensive things out of the car when you’re not in it.

“Don’t leave anything valuable in your car, and if you have to leave it, put it in the trunk or the glove compartment,” she says. “Don’t leave it out in plain sight. Even if it just looks valuable to someone, they’ll take it.”

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