3 more homes hit by daylight burglars

OKEECHOBEE — Three more homes across Okeechobee County were broken into Wednesday, Oct. 19, by brazen daylight burglars who simply kicked in the doors.

These break-in artists are spending very little time inside the homes. And, in the latest burglaries, limited themselves to purloining only jewelry, guns and cash.

“They’re, basically, going through bedrooms and ransacking the drawers,” Michele Bell, Okeechobee County Sheriff’s Office (OCSO) public information officer, said Thursday.

She went on to say the doors on all the homes burglarized Wednesday were locked, and the thieves either kicked open the doors or pried them open.

Since June the sheriff’s office has been deluged with these types of burglaries. OCSO records show there have been at least 106 of these ‘kick in’ burglaries throughout the county.

“It seems like we’re having these every day,” said Mrs. Bell.

According to OCSO records, Wednesday’s burglaries occurred in the 800 block of N.E. 101st Avenue, the 12000 block of U.S. 441 S.E. and in the 11300 block of N.E. 51st Court.

Mrs. Bell said neighbors need to be vigilant of what’s going on in the homes around them.

“And take notice if you see someone driving slowly through the neighborhood,” she offered. “If you see something suspicious, call the sheriff’s office.”

She went on to say if a homeowner has video surveillance cameras on their property, activate those cameras. If they have an alarm system, activate it.

“It doesn’t do any good if these things aren’t activated,” Mrs. Bell said.

Last week, three homes in Larodo Shores on U.S. 441 S.E. were burglarized. Again, the thieves kicked in the front door of those homes to gain entry.

OCSO Detective Bryan Lowe said in an interview after those burglaries that it is important for homeowners to make contact with their neighbors and to watch out for each other.

“And lock your doors, obviously,” he said.

In prior burglaries thieves have televisions, computers, generators, guns, jewelry and cash.

Detective Lowe also suggested homeowners should document the serial numbers on their guns, electronics and such. Having the serial numbers can help law enforcement locate the items in area pawn shops.

It can also be a big help to law enforcement if the homeowner would photograph or video their belongings.

If you see something suspicious in your neighborhood, contact the sheriff’s office at 863-763-3117.

Eric Kopp is a staff writer for the Okeechobee News

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