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So those phone and iPad apps that help law enforcement find stolen devices do work: The Kirkland Police Department says it used Apple’s “Find My iPhone” app last week to initiate the successful pursuit of a man who broke into a Bellevue woman’s car.

While the woman attended a Lacrosse match at Juanita High School, the man shattered a rear passenger door window of her 2004 Lexus and took her purse and iPad 2, according to a release from the Kirkland Police Department.

The woman provided police with an iPhone she still had on hand to activate the application, which tracks the location of devices.

After seeing that the thief was driving south on the I-405, Kirkland officers coordinated with SeaTac police who pulled him over and found the woman’s belongings. The suspect was booked into jail on charges of possessing stolen property, a crime for which he already had an extensive criminal record of arrests and convictions.

Locating apps, such as the one used in this case must be installed and enabled before a theft takes place, the Kirkland Police Department warns in its news release about the incident. They also said leaving valuables such as a purse in your car is not a good idea – especially not atĀ parks, recreational areas, youth- and school-sporting events. Those areas are most prone to car theft, the release said.

Similar apps and programs exist for other devices such as Androids or any laptop.