Burglaries Pt. 1: What makes your house a target?
YAKIMA, Wash.- Looking at your house, you might be impressed with your yard or how well the tree shades the porch.
But burglars could see it as their next target. Especially if parts of the house are covered by trees or bushes.
“Someone can hide in yard and not be seen by a neighbor or people driving by the road. Another house where a burglar's going to say ‘I like that. I think I might go hit that house,’” Chief Robert Udell with the sheriff’s office said.
Udell said Yakima County is above the state average when it comes to property crimes and they go to burglary call outs everyday.
He said burglars do this for a living and usually study the house they want for days before they go in.
“They'll keep an eye on things. We'll get calls I think someone is casing our house.' maybe they are,” Udell said.
He said open drive ways and homes in rural areas are the most likely to get hit, because burglars think they can still get away even if you come home.
In 2016, Yakima had over 1,000 burglaries according to FBI and city statistics. Which is only slightly more than 2017.
While there was a slight decrease in the total last year, Yakima police said most of them are left unsolved because they don’t have much of a lead to begin with.
“We don't have suspect information. Unfortunately, what ends up happening during the middle of the night or when they're at work,” Sergeant David Cortez with YPD said.
Cortez is part of the department’s gang and property crimes division and said they usually deal with the same people when it comes to burglaries.
He says if a person has hit one house, they’re probably responsible for others police don’t know about.
“Before that person is caught they may have committed dozens of property crimes before they are caught,” Cortez said.
If your home is ever burglarized, Udell wants people to call law enforcement as soon as they realized it happen.
He said most people will feel like something will never get done or they just don't know what to do.
“They feel like they're bothering us or they think that nothing will be done. That's a big mistake. They have to call law enforcement. Let us know,” Udell said.