SCHOFIELD BARRACKS, Hawaii - Phillip Hendrix loved his scooter. Eyes lit up on the 4-year-old's face when his parents brought it home. Less than two weeks later, the scooter was gone.

"I couldn't believe that someone would take it right out of our carport," said Jennifer Hendrix, Phillip's mom. "He was crushed."

When a new scooter arrived, the Hendrix family took action to protect their property by registering it during "Operation Property Identification" at the Main Post Exchange here, recently.

"It's a lot easier to claim your stolen goods when you are able to identify them," said Sgt. 1st Class Todd Hendrix, 71st Chemical Company. "It's just a good idea."

Hosted by the Directorate of Emergency Services (DES), Operation Property Identification allows community members to register bicycles, along with other high-value items. The free registration includes property identification, engraving, photographs and ownership documentation.

Engraving bikes, scooters, skateboards, jewelry and high-value items or easily pilfered property aids in identifying, recovering and returning property if it is stolen, according to Detective Edward Walker, Schofield Barracks Provost Marshal Office.

"A higher percent of recovered property will be returned to rightful owners when it is registered," said Walker. "This registration has yielded positive results in crime prevention."

Lt. Col. Thomas Denzler, director, DES, said a majority of theft taking place in on post housing has occurred with unsecured items. Although Denzler urged family members to lock up private property, registering personal items will guarantee a reunion if the items are recovered.

This year alone, eight stolen bicycles have been recovered and returned to their owners.

"That statistic would be a lot higher if the items were registered," said Walker.

The Directorate of Emergency Services will hold the next "Operation Property Identification," Dec. 6 and Dec. 15, 11 a.m.-3 p.m., at the Schofield Barracks Main Post Exchange entrance. For more information, call 808-655-5170.

Page last updated Fri July 22nd, 2011 at 12:16