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Unlocked Doors Lead to Beach Burglaries

08/09/2011 at 4:48pm

Unlocked Doors Lead to Beach Burglaries

Beach living means trusting your neighbors. Enjoying the laid-back beach lifestyle means that many Islanders leave their homes and vehicles unlocked. That trusting nature proved an open invitation to some thieving miscreants Sunday, as five homes and vehicles were burglarized overnight at several mid-island locations.

Two homes on Coconut Drive reported break-ins. Three vehicles, two on Bay Mar Drive and one in the 3800 Block of Estero Blvd, were also burglarized.

The one thing all five incidents had in common according to Tony Schall, Public Information Officer for the LCSO: Every one of the homes or vehicles were unlocked at the time of the burglary.

In one case an alarm was triggered before entry. In another case, residents were sleeping upstairs when the burglars entered a downstairs apartment. No injuries were reported.

Joe Workman of Coconut Drive reported that his home, car and workshop were all burglarized. He said he may have startled the burglars when he rose early on Monday morning. Some of his items were recovered in the neighborhood, the thieves apparently dropping them as they ran from the scene.

Schall explained, "These people go for the easy ones. They go through neighborhoods and jiggle car doors and house doors. If it opens, they’ll take a look at what’s inside and help themselves.”

He encouraged Beach residents to lock their house and car doors, especially at night. Keep an eye on your neighborhood and report suspicious activity. Lighting and alarms are also helpful. "Burglars hate lights and alarms.”

"Leaving your property unlocked is an invitation to criminals to take your things. Don’t be an easy target!”

If you have any information on these break-ins, contact the LCSO at 239-477-1000.