Police in Milpitas and Fremont are increasing patrol around shopping centers after an alarming spike in car burglaries.
In Fremont, police said 26 cars were burglarized Monday night, adding to the 145 burglaries already reported this year in neighboring Milpitas.
Police said it is possible the burglars are part of an organized crime ring, but believe it's more likely thieves sharing information on sweet spots.
Thieves are targeting parking lots in shopping centers at the Great Mall and the McCarthy Ranch in Milpitas, and two shopping centers on Barber Lane.
Authorities are now warning drivers to lock their doors and to not leave any valuables inside their vehicles.