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Posted on Wed, May 22, 2013 : 12:51 p.m.

Recent break-ins prompt warning from police in northern Washtenaw County

By John Counts

Northfield_badge.jpg

Police in the Whitmore Lake area are warning residents to lock their doors after a spate of recent home invasions.

Northfield Township police Lt. Tim Greene said there have been six break-ins in the past month, many of them with similar methods of operation like smashing windows to get inside and snatching small items like jewelry. Most of the break-ins have occurred during the day, too.

While there is no hard evidence linking the break-ins, the similar methods suggest the crimes are related.

“They’re on a bender, I guess,” Greene said about the suspect or suspects.

The latest home invasion was reported Sunday in the 300 block of Beachway Avenue in the Horse Shoe Lake Subdivision. A rear glass door window was broken out, which is where the culprit appeared to have entered and exited, according to police. The homeowner came home after being gone for several hours to discover money and other miscellaneous items were missing.

On May 15, a man said a jewelry box and a small safe were stolen from his home in the 4000 block of Seven Mile Road. Two days earlier, a woman in the 8000 block of Main Street found her door window broken and several rings from a jewelry box missing.

Jewelry also was reported stolen from a residence in the 6300 block of Earhart Road on May 8. A man stepped out between 10:45 and 11:10 a.m. and discovered the rear window of the home was broken out when he returned. The burglar may have been interrupted by the man's return, according to police. There were also computers and other miscellaneous items missing.

A passerby told police he or she may have seen a dark colored pickup truck, possibly a Dodge Dakota, in the driveway during the time of that incident.

There also were home invasions reported on April 29 in the 9000 block of Harbor Cove Circle, where an apartment was broken into and robbed of several items, and on April 22 in the 8000 block of Main Street. In that incident, various pieces of jewelry were taken, though there were no signs of forced entry.

“There’s no indication the homes are being targeted,” Greene said, adding that jewelry is being taken because it "is small and easy to conceal."

Green Oak Township police in Livingston County arrested a 17-year-old boy on May 13 in connection with three nearby home invasions, the Livingston Daily Press and Argus reported. But since break-ins have occurred in Northfield after that, Greene doesn't think they've gotten their thief or thieves yet.

Last week, Green Oak Township police said they were investigating a home invasion that occurred near the intersection of North Main Street and North Shore Road May 6. A woman was home at the time and reportedly struck in the face, police said. Investigators believe the suspect knew the victim and targeted the house in that incident.

Greene urges residents to report any suspicious behavior to police. Greene also encourages the public to take certain precautions like locking doors and having photographs on file of items so police can identify them if stolen and recovered. Another measure the public can take is writing their driver's license number on items, Greene said.

Anyone with information about the home invasions is encouraged to contact the Northfield Township Police Department at (734) 449-9911 or anonymously through Crime Stoppers at 1-800-SPEAK-UP.


View Whitmore Break-ins in a larger map

John Counts covers cops and courts for AnnArbor.com. He can be reached at johncounts@annarbor.com or you can follow him on Twitter.

Comments

bootscootincrooner

Fri, May 31, 2013 : 3:46 p.m.

I've lived in Whitmore Lake for about 17 years, and I've noticed that people DON'T lock their doors, cars, etc.. The police NEED to make this a little more public and let people know about these break ins! Please watch out for your neighbors and tell them what's going on.

Ann English

Thu, May 23, 2013 : 12:08 a.m.

Before seeing the map, I thought you were mentioning a burglary well outside the area described; I had no idea that Earhart Road went that far north, into Northfield Township, beyond North Territorial. Must be an experienced burglar, to take any items bigger than jewelry away in just 15 minutes!

LaMusica

Wed, May 22, 2013 : 6:44 p.m.

Locking doors is good advice, but it doesn't seem to be a factor in many of these break ins, since the thieves are smashing windows.