Brazen burglaries concern detectives

OKEECHOBEE — With 103 open burglary cases in Okeechobee County since June, investigators with the Okeechobee County Sheriff’s Office (OCSO) are asking for the public’s help.

“If you see something, call a deputy. We’d rather have a call that turns out to be nothing, than no call,” OCSO public information officer Michele Bell said Wednesday, Oct. 12.

She went on to explain that many times the thieves are very brazen — they simply kick in the front door then go into the home and help themselves to whatever they want. The burglars have been stealing electronics (TVs, computers, etc.), jewelry, generators, guns and cash.

“It seems like we’re having these every day,” she offered.

She went on to point out that three more home break-ins were assigned to detectives Wednesday. Those burglaries occurred Tuesday, Oct. 11, in Larodo Shores on U.S. 441 S.E.

OCSO Detective Bryan Lowe said the modus operandi in those burglaries was the same as the others — the thieves kicked in the front doors to enter the homes.

He went on to explain that a lot of the burglaries are being committed on homes that are by themselves or where homes are all in a row, such as in Larodo Shores.

“When they’re in a row, it makes it hard to see your neighbor’s home,” he said.

Like Mrs. Bell, Detective Lowe said the best way to prevent or stop these types of burglaries is to pay attention to what’s going on in your neighborhood.

If you see a strange vehicle driving around in your neighborhood or pulling into a driveway, call the sheriff’s office.

“Make contact with your neighbors and watch out for each other,” offered Detective Lowe. “And lock your doors, obviously.”

He also said it would be a good idea to document the serial numbers on your electronics, guns and such. If you have those serial numbers it makes it easier to locate the items in area pawnshops.

“It also will help with your insurance,” he noted.

Photographing or taking videos of all your belongings can also be helpful to law enforcement.

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

Eric Kopp is a staff writer for the Okeechobee News

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