West Seattle Crime Watch: 2 break-ins – 1 “alarmed,” 1 not

Two reports to share tonight – one from someone who’s seeking an alarm as the result of another burglary, one from someone whose alarm was triggered but got burglarized anyway – read on:

First report is from Helen:

Just wanted to report a break-in from last week. I’m in the 5900 block of 18th Ave SW [map], and last week my house was broken into for the 2nd time in two years. I’m missing 2 laptops, a couple of PC games, about 12 cd’s, and an xbox 360, along with the controllers and a few games. My suspicion is that my back door wasn’t deadbolted, and that the lock on the doorknob was bumped or otherwise tampered with. There are no signs of forced entry anywhere on my house, which is why I didn’t notice anything amiss until Saturday night. :(

So, while I won’t be calling my insurance company to report a second break-in since there’s no real damage to repair, I will be calling alarm companies around the area to collect bids. Oh, and putting a light on the north side of my house, along with some security screen doors for aesthetics and safety’s sake.

Second one is from Sydney (who’s just over the city/county line, but certainly we have WSBers outside the city limits too):

Around 1:30 pm (Monday) received a call from our security company that our burglar alarm went off. Never received a call back saying whether it was a false alarm or not. Got home from work to find the kitchen window screen ripped off (at least 8-10 feet off the ground). Missing flat screen tv, ipods, cameras, dvd player, Nintendo wii, jewelry, etc. Shortly after we had a Comcast come service our house too. During broad daylight. Must have left through the front door to trigger the alarm. Had another large plasma tv ready to go out but didn’t take that post alarm. Items thrown about the house. Live on 20th Ave SW. [just south of Roxbury; map]

13 Replies to "West Seattle Crime Watch: 2 break-ins - 1 "alarmed," 1 not"

  • cclarue August 5, 2009 (11:05 pm)

    Calling alarm companies for bid,… or how about a big barking dog like my mastiff? he is really a gentle giant but just doesnt sound like that when someone knocks at the door or comes in our yard. I am curious if all of these break-ins lately are houses with dogs big or small.

  • Someone who cares August 6, 2009 (12:51 am)

    Making connections with your neighbors is the best defense against would-be robbers. Knowing your neighbor “Phil” works 9-5 each day is handy. If you are home sick and notice a bunch of stuff moving around at “Phil’s” at 1pm, it is not nosy, it is caring to wonder. It Never hurts to ask the police to go & check out something “odd” going on. If “Phil” is just having a carpet replacement or painting party, everyone can have a good laugh, no harm done.

    As far as the dogs go, I am not sure how well they work. As far as letting you know something is going on, dogs are great. I am just not sure every Fido, big or small, can scare off a crook. Dogs can be out smarted.

    Home alarm systems are wonderful, if you don’t have false alarms. Don’t let your alarm system become “the boy who cried wolf!” If something is wrong, you don’t want to brush it off as another false alarm and come home to a big sad mess!

    Be safe in the world! Don’t be a crazy hero. Stuff can be replaced, people and pets are can not!

  • megan b August 6, 2009 (12:52 am)

    Oh no Helen! You are my neighbor (I’m also at the 5900 block of 18th)- sorry to hear you were broken in to. Also makes me glad that we have an alarm, though the second post makes me wonder how effective they are except as a possible visual deterrent.

    And as far as advocating dogs as crime deterrents go– I’d love to have the time to be a pet owner to a dog, but they require a LOT of work (mastiffs especially) and I’d never even think of adopting a dog just for security’s sake.

  • bone to pick!!! August 6, 2009 (2:00 am)

    any comments we should take up a petition to have the mini market torn down!!!

  • Grazer August 6, 2009 (9:46 am)

    When our neighborhood was dealing with a rash of break-ins we all compared our research into alarm companies and found that pretty much they’re all the same, even the equipment used. The question becomes local or not, hardwired or wireless. Find what works for you. What most of us decided on was ADT. Brinks was twice as much for the same products.
    Forming a neighborhood e-mail list, and getting to know your neighbors is by far the best solution. I also urge people to call the police whenever they have a suspicion, most of the time your right!

  • Lindsey August 6, 2009 (10:56 am)


    I think i might install this when I am away for long periods of time.

  • Lindsey August 6, 2009 (10:56 am)

    At least you’d have video of the perp.

  • boocrime August 6, 2009 (11:54 am)

    we got rid ADT monitoring because it was awful. We still have the alarm. They called our home when it went off and then never called back. And duh if we had been broken into they are calling the burgler. They are basically just a call center that doesn’t care so we saw no use in paying them monthly. As well the police are strapped so they don’t call them — or if they do the police rarely come to alarm calls. And if they do its low priority so they come after the perp is gone. I’m just saying…

  • cclarue August 6, 2009 (12:29 pm)

    Oh megan b we do not have our mastiff just for security, he is most definitely a family member. I just feel like an alarm is not necessary since I have him. I do not support people getting a dog for security only. I just think it is a side benefit of having a dog that some criminals may not choose my house because there is some deterent that they do not feel like dealing with that particular day. Mastiffs by the way are a relatively low maintenance dog as far as dogs go. They just eat more and take up alot of space and need bigger beds. Back to the topic in the past I have had a Brinks alarm and they were great! We had a couple of false alarms and a ticket for about 165.00 from the seattle police though. But good quick calls from them when we mistakenly set it off and were home. I was allways impressed with their fast call times.

  • Sherry August 6, 2009 (1:21 pm)

    Check out Puget Sound Alarm. They’re local and less expensive than the big national companies. I’ve been very happy with them.

  • Christine August 7, 2009 (4:10 pm)

    My house got broken into earlier this year. We had just moved to the neighborhood so it was really distressing. We went with Allied Security and have been really happy with them. They are spendy up front but worth it. Ask for Paul. Also I cannot encourage you enough to get to know your neighbors. The postive that came out of my experience was I was really proactive meeting my neighbors and setting up a block watch. We just had a fantastic Night Out! Good Luck!

  • Mark August 9, 2009 (5:02 pm)

    Nothing works like a dog’s bark! And be very careful about alarm companies. We contracted with Brinks Security. We were given the option of having the police or a private security company respond (the reason being that if it’s a false alarm, SPD charges $100 per call and the security company $45). Our alarm was tripped twice while we were away because of an installation malfunction. Here’s what we found out from having our alarm tripped: There is no private service company contracted to cover HIghland Park. But the best: The first time the alarm went off, it took SPD 90 minutes to respond. The second time, 3 hours. Some good the alarm does if the thugs know that they have AMPLE time to get away.

    My suggestion: a dog with a loud bark!

  • Debster August 9, 2009 (9:51 pm)

    Getting to know the neighbors is number one. I know my neighbors and their pets. We watch out for each other every day. When one goes on vacation the rest of us watch that house, take in the mail, change the lights going on, take care of the pets and plants… It’s wonderful and like an extension of your family. It is also the BEST burgler deterrant. There is always someone home and we see who comes and goes up our street. My daughter and her friend got shaken up the other night (very late!) when a neighbor asked about the friends car being parked where it was… I explained they just wanted a face to go with the car in case there was a problem on our street. If you don’t know your neighbors get out there and meet them. Start a phone tree, form a block watch. The Police will come to your blockwatch meetings and listen and give insight and information.

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