ATLANTA – You’d expect when you put personal items in a storage unit they will remain safe; however, that has not been the case for some in the Atlanta area.
Duane moved into a storage unit this past Saturday at Extra Space Storage at the intersection of Lindbergh Drive and Cheshire Bridge Road. He told 11Alive that he received a phone call from the management office on Monday saying the lock on his unit had been broken.
Duane immediately rushed over to see what damage had been done.
“When we opened the storage unit up, it was destroyed and ransacked,” Duane said. “All of my belongings were just ransacked, and the whole unit… looked like it had just been driving .”
Duane said he had at least $20,000 worth of items in the unit including personal items. He said there was heirloom silverware that had been in his family for 80 years and other valuable jewelry.
PHOTOS | Atlanta storage unit break-ins
He stated his locked file cabinets were also broken into. Since there was personal information within those cabinets, Duane has since shut down all his accounts to cover his bases.
“We pretty much have been violated,” Duane said. “I dropped to my knees and I actually dropped to the concrete… and started crying.”
The manager told Duane the company had already assigned someone to the property for additional security since there have been recent problems. Duane said there weren’t any cameras on the hall where his unit was located.
Atlanta police said they have been to this location 28 times this year alone, including nine to just patrol the area.
Police are currently investigating eight reports of thefts at the storage units in the first ten weeks of the year. This includes Duane’s case.
The incident report for a theft case that happened on Feb. 14 revealed there wasn’t security video available from the floor of the unit, just like, Duane says, in his case.
A corporate spokesman tells 11Alive News that so many thefts in so short a time is unusual; he says that, to try to prevent more crimes, the company is hiring private security to help police patrol the property, and is working to increase camera surveillance coverage.