Two cars were broken into in the parking lot of the Mountain View YMCA at 525 Hans Ave.
Both break-ins occurred between 9 p.m. and 10 p.m. on Nov. 18, according to Shino Tanaka, public information officer for the Mountain View Police Department. Both victims had entered the YMCA.
In both cases, windows were smashed and the items stolen were visible to anyone looking into the vehicles from the outside, Tanaka said. One victim had her purse stolen. Another victim had his laptop taken.
Tanaka said police can't be sure at this point whether it was the same culprit that broke into both cars. However, she said the "motive seems to be the same" in both cases.
"It's always best to take your stuff with you if you can," Tanaka said, referring to people who leave valuables in their cars. If you can't take your items with you, Tanaka said, do your best to keep them out of sight -- under a seat or in the trunk. When concealing items, she added, "be aware of your surroundings" and look out for people who may be watching you.
Some thieves observe drivers as they park, watching to see if they put valuable items under their seats or in the trunks of their vehicles, she said.