Return of the burglars

A WSB reader asked us to let everyone to know his neighborhood has just been hit again. Read on for details, in his own words:

It has happened again.  On Monday night burglars struck my neighborhood near the Junction (the residential blocks between Alaska and Oregon, just down the hill from California).

The neighbors had been away for a few days and had only just come home that night. They went to bed around 11 pm and shortly afterward a thief or thieves somehow opened their garage door, entered the first floor of their townhouse and stole a bunch of high-dollar items including two laptops. They also stole their car (a 2006 black Honda CRV).  They even went so far as to rifle through the suitcases that my weary neighbors had dropped inside their door before they went  upstairs to sleep. The neighbors said they had fans on and did not know anyone had been in the house until they woke up the next morning.

SPD came out and took a report and even dusted for fingerprints. But they offered very little hope that any of their property would be recovered, including the car which at this very moment is probably on a container ship to Asia.

Especially now that people are going on vacations, please … take precautions. These thieves seem to be very good at noting which houses are vacant, even for a few days.  Putting your lights on timers is essential if you’re going to be away.  In this case the SPD suggested that the robbers may be using multi-frequency transmitters to open garage doors.

17 Replies to "Return of the burglars"

  • Cruiser June 28, 2007 (7:05 am)

    Sorry to read this, the poor folks.
    I think it’s a good idea not to leave your garage remotes in your car whilst you park on the street(I used to!). If you are going away, or even as you lock up at night, disable the garage door from the inside by switched it off.
    Oh yeah and get to know your neighbours, not just so they’ll keep an eye on your house but because thieves like these heros hate a close community where they are noticed straight off.

  • flipjack June 28, 2007 (7:38 am)

    another good reminder to make a stop on your way home from work to buy that shotgun.

  • Christopher Boffoli June 28, 2007 (7:59 am)

    Yeah, it might be interesting to see how quickly the burglaries stop if every household in West Seattle was issued a firearm by the City. They could take it out of the police budget.

    We Americans have a very nice national tradition of taking human life to protect property.

    In all seriousness, I can’t stress enough that putting timers on your lights is ESSENTIAL if you’re going to be out of town. It sounds so basic but these thieves pay very close attention. The burglary and the attempted burglary in my neighborhood happened after the residents had been out of town.

  • David June 28, 2007 (8:09 am)

    A gun, like a motorcycle (and I’m an owner of both) should only be used by someone with experience and/or training. If you’re going to get a gun for ‘self defense’, please take a local safety training course (just ask any local gun range like Wades in Bellevue). Otherwise I’d stick with a electric stun gun or pepper spray to make you feel better. :)

    Course a bugler alarm on their door (between the garage and the inside of the town house) would have helped.

  • David June 28, 2007 (8:11 am)

    Timers on the lights are great. Another one people sometimes forget…call the newspaper and stop delivery. A giant 5 day pile of newspapers stacked up by your front door is a good sign you’re not really there too.

  • Christopher Boffoli June 28, 2007 (9:20 am)

    Of course, hold your mail too. You can even take care of it online at

  • Patty June 28, 2007 (10:05 am)

    There is an apartment building 4546 SW 45th st Siberay Apts just down the street from this townhome building. The lower storage unit is always full of electronics, jet skis etc. The stuff comes and goes always changing. I have send a mail to Seattle Police, any other options?

  • eric June 28, 2007 (10:46 am)

    I resisted installing an alarm system for a loooong time. Last year, I finally did it. The monitoring through Brinks cost about $25 per month (less than a dollar a day, as they like to say).

    I originally thought it would be great for when we were out of town, but I also find that I actually feel a sense of comfort at night when we are home too.

    It’s a small price to pay for piece of mind.

    Of course, a shotgun is only $300 at Big 5….

  • ck June 28, 2007 (12:19 pm)

    putting guns in every house will only increase the break-ins… to steal the gun when the owner isn’t home. besides, issuing guns wouldn’t be enough, because the majority wouldn’t know how to use them properly anyway.

  • JD June 28, 2007 (3:14 pm)

    In November, our house between Alaska and Oregon on 42nd was robbed by two high school kids. We were actually home sleeping (not for long) during the robbery and SPD were able to catch them in the act. Cops told us timers and motion detector lights are the best way to keep out burglars.

  • Forest June 28, 2007 (3:15 pm)

    Unless you can prove you were defending your life instead of your property, don’t even think about shooting a burglar in your house. You’re likely to get prosecuted for manslaughter or assault with intent to kill.

    I suppose that paying monthly for a security system is worthwhile in the event that someone breaks in AND the police arrive immediately after notification from the alarm company, but a good or better alternative might be a small device that gives off one loud and clear beep whenever someone enters via a window or door. Plus, of course, deadbolts on all the exterior doors and locks or track bars on the outside window frames.

  • eric June 28, 2007 (6:10 pm)

    yeah…. I don’t have the alarm to notify the police. Mostly to notify me to get my shotgun.

    As for you legal advice…. Burglar in someones home in the middle of the night vs. law-abiding citizen: the outcome in court would be the same every time.

    Once you break into my home at night while my family is sleeping, I am reasonably afraid for my life and fully justified in taking you out. You’re not going to find a single case of a homeowner getting charged in an instance like that.

  • Forest June 28, 2007 (8:48 pm)

    eric –

    That’s what I said, you’ll have to establish that you were defending a life. And it will have to be established in court.

    Google the terms: manslaughter “shooting burglar”

  • Cruiser June 28, 2007 (8:52 pm)

    Well if you’re gonna shoot make sure it drops on your property not out on the street:)

  • The House June 28, 2007 (10:17 pm)

    Gotta side with Eric on this one. If I wake up in the middle of the night and someone I don’t know is in my house, they’re short for this Earth. I don’t care if they tried me for MS. I’d rather serve 10 years in prison than run the risk of that jerkoff harming my wife or kids.

  • Near Admiral July 5, 2007 (10:23 am)

    FYI – Our house was robbed the very next day near Admiral – probably by the same individuals. Laptops, cameras, music gear was stolen. PLEASE take every precaution for home – we are in the process of getting an alarm system installed now.

  • Joke Boy July 5, 2007 (4:37 pm)

    Alarm system? Can you spell D-O-G-S?? =O) Works for me, big time!

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