COLUMBIA, Mo-Since early January, there have been a string of burglaries happening in rural and semi-rural areas in Boone County.
This comes after there were more than a thousand burglaries last year with more than two million dollars worth of items stolen. Broken down, that is about three houses broken into daily and about $4,500 worth of stuff. This rash of burglaries is stealing mostly jewelry due it being easier to sell than electronics.
These burglaries are typically happening in broad daylight. During the day most people are at school or work. The burglars will ring the doorbell and if no one answers, they have a perfect opportunity for them to break in. Detective Tom O’Sullivan says they will think quick if a person answers the door. “If somebody answers the door, the burglar will have some kind of excuse as to why they are standing there on your front porch. They will say, ‘I am lost or I’m looking for the Henderson residence. And in this day and age with everybody having cell phones and internet access there’s really no reason for somebody to come up to your door asking for directions or saying they’re lost’. That is very suspicious and you should immediately call 9-1-1.”
Investigators say one of the problems is residents are alerting the police too late of suspicious activity.
Along with staying alert, the Sheriff’s department says to get good locks, doors, and windows .
A resident of one of the affected areas, Lola Limoges says, “My mom protects herself with a security system which is on all the windows and all the doors and she sets that at night.”
Detective O’Sullivan says that burglars typically stay away from houses that warn of an alarm system.
Neighbors are asked to call the police immediately if they see anything suspicious.