“We don’t feel safe:” Woman wants cameras at Park & Ride lot after thieves cut Jeep, stole battery

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MILWAUKEE -- Commuters say a Park and Ride lot in Milwaukee is quickly becoming a favorite spot for crooks -- and you might not believe what they're taking!

Niki Hayek wants security cameras installed at the College Avenue Park and Ride lot to monitor potential criminal activity. Meanwhile, she says commuters shouldn't park there.

College Avenue Park and Ride

College Avenue Park and Ride

Hayek told FOX6 News she used to park her car in the Park and Ride's northeast lot. It became a great way to avoid traffic.

"It can be a beast," Hayek said.

Hayek would leave her Jeep Grand Cherokee in the lot, and then take a shuttle to work in downtown Milwaukee. That is, until one April evening when she got off the bus and walked back to her car.

Niki Hayek

Niki Hayek

"It was cold that day, so I have a remote start. I went to start my Jeep and nothing happened," Hayek said.

It turns out, Hayek was the victim of crafty thieves.

"I opened my hood a little bit and lo and behold, there`s no battery!" Hayek said.

Hayek says her co-worker's car recently had its wheels stolen. She said she wants something done about this.

College Avenue Park and Ride

A number of victims have called FOX6 News and asked us which law enforcement agency is responsible for this lot. It turns out, the answer is complicated.

Milwaukee police told FOX6 News this particular Park and Ride lot is sort of a jurisdictional "no man's land," along the city's edge.

College Avenue Park and Ride

Officials with the Milwaukee County Sheriff's Office said the lot is owned and operated by the Wisconsin Department of Transportation.

College Avenue Park and Ride

FOX6 News did see some security vehicles patrolling the area Monday night.

Both MPD and MCSO deputies will respond to crimes-in-progress at the lot, depending on which side of I-94 the incident happens on.

"Cameras, I think, would be beneficial," Hayek said.

Since January 2016, Milwaukee police say they have reports of one or two car parts being stolen per month from the northeast lot at this Park and Ride location alone.

Within the last month, an entire vehicle was stolen.

College Avenue Park and Ride

Hayek and some of her co-workers have now found alternative transportation as a result.

"We don`t feel safe. That`s the biggest thing," Hayek said.

College Avenue Park and Ride

This is a statement from the Milwaukee County Sheriff's Office issued to FOX6 News:

WisDOT, the State financed and operated entity, owns and is the responsible party for seven (7) of the seventeen (17) park and ride lots in the county.  The Ryan Road park and ride and College Ave. park and rides are under WisDOT.

Our agency has continued to respond to calls for service originating in the remaining ten (10) county-owned lots, and all emergency (i.e. health and safety-related or crime-in-progress) calls for service throughout the county.

All calls for service for property-damage and theft claims originating in the indicated state-owned park and ride lots are currently being directed to the Waukesha barracks of the State Patrol (262) 785-4700) for action, and to WisDOT (800) 455-7665).


  • Gary Hamilton

    I’m sorry Miss. Hayes you don’t really expect law abiding citizens to be protected in Milwaukee.

  • Klaatu

    Milwaukee loves the cute and ever so cuddly auto thieves. The little scamps warm the hearts of Mayor McTrolley, the judges and D.A.’s with their silly pranks.
    Why would anyone waste resources patrolling the lot to prevent theft? …The system just let’s the thieves off with a stern finger shaking and fatherly advice anyway.


    Be happy that the little boys stealing for ice cream money didn’t put a gun in your face or beat you up. Don’t expect to be protected. The Police catch the children at crime then the courts send them home to mommy. They then look like real tough guys in the eyes of some 14 year old girls in their neighborhood. Soon another child is born with very little chance to be anything. Same cycle that their daddies did.

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