Woman caught neighbor breaking in on camera
SELAH, Wash. - Yakima police respond to multiple break-ins every day, but when comes to actual neighbors going into other neighbors homes, many locals had the same response.
"I don't think they would, you don't really know what a person is like anymore," said Connie Cluck, a Selah Resident.
Spokesman at the Yakima Police Department Mike Bastinelli says they hardly ever get cases in which the suspect is in the same neighborhood.
"It's rare, usually we encourage people to get to know their neighbors, to look out for their neighbors," said Bastinelli.
This rare situation turned into a reality for one woman in Selah. Police reports said she got a notification on her phone from her security system alerting her that someone was on her property, and she recognized that it was her neighbor from across the street.
Police went to the home and noticed that the suspect was wearing the same clothing as in the surveillance footage, and claimed that he was only looking for some cigarettes.
He's booked in the Yakima County jail for residential burglary. Bastinelli says surveillance footage can be the ultimate crime stopper when it comes to home break-ins.
"What makes it challenging to solve those types of crimes is that there are no witnesses. So we urge people if they can, to get some sort of security device. Many times that's the way we can solve crimes," said Bastinelli.
Often times when Yakima police respond to break-ins, Bastinelli says it usually happens to people who don't lock their doors and windows.
"That may sound simple to people, but you may be surprised how many burglaries happen where people get through an unlocked door, or maybe a backdoor left open," said Bastinelli.
Bastinelli also recommends starting a neighborhood block watch. According to the Neighborhood Block Watch Association, it's been proven that having one prevents high crime rates in neighborhoods.