CASCADE, Iowa — With multiple recent complaints about vehicle burglaries and vandalism, City of Cascade officials are ramping up efforts to hire more police.

Video evidence and eyewitness accounts indicate that the recent perpetrators might be a small group of older teenagers.

“I urge people to lock their cars,” said Police Chief Fred Heim. “It’s the Christmas season, so people go shopping and they leave things in their cars accidentally. Try to lock your cars and take things out if you can remember.”

These thefts are a continuation of problems that have been reported in Monticello and the rest of Jones County.

Mayor Greg Staner reported this has been coming for a while.

“I’ve checked with Fred since this all started back in March on our end because of what’s gone on with our night shifts, and we’ve been extremely fortunate,” Staner said. “We know that this can’t continue, so the personnel committee has put out an (advertisement) to start interviews again for officers. For the longest time, we’ve been closed up and it’s been a weird year, but now, it’s time to start focusing on it.”