By LESLIE COLLINS
March 20, 2013
Burglaries continue to plague the Pendleton Heights neighborhood and the Kansas City Police Department (KCPD) is seeking the public’s help in identifying one of the suspects.
In January, burglars broke into two vacant homes to steal copper and in February, four homes were burglarized. March has been one of the worst months, where KCPD noted an uptick in activity. Two burglaries occurred on March 3 and a burglary occurred on March 8, 10 and 11. All of the homes targeted in March were resident-occupied, but the residents weren’t home when the burglaries occurred.
“It looks like their focus is on electronics and computers,” Central Patrol Community Interaction Officer Jim Schriever told Northeast News.
Detective Laura Snapp of Central Patrol added the suspects are targeting small, portable electronics, like laptops.
In March, suspects gained entry by breaking the windows of three homes and by kicking in the door of two other homes. At one Pendleton Heights home on Elma, KCPD found three separate sets of footprints on the door.
“We’ve had prints collected from two of the scenes. We’re always hoping those come back to somebody,” Snapp said.
However, analyzing prints from a property crime sometimes takes up to three months since it’s not a violent crime, she said.
In the mean time, KCPD is tracking individuals recently released from jail and those known for committing crimes, she said. In addition, Central Patrol is working with East Patrol to identify similar break-in patterns and possible burglary suspects.
“It’s frustrating for us, too, because we want to catch the person that’s doing it. It’s frustrating because there can be a lot of different people that could be suspects,” Snapp said.
KCPD is working the recent rash of break-ins in Pendleton Heights as a pattern. Most of the burglaries have occurred during the middle of the day or during the evening hours.
A home surveillance system captured video of one of the suspects in March, a black male wearing a blue hat and gray hoodie. Witnesses reported seeing three black males dressed in sweat jackets, one red, one gray and one green, leaving the scene running east. Some stolen items were discovered behind Snyder’s Supermarket on Independence Avenue. If you recognize the pictured suspect or have any information regarding these crimes, please call the Central Patrol Division’s Property Crimes Unit, (816) 234-5515. If you see the suspect, call 911 immediately.
Asked how residents can keep their homes safe, Snapp said, “If they’re willing to invest in an alarm, we always recommend that.”
Residents should also write down the serial numbers, makes and models of their electronics, since KCPD employs a pawn shop detective who gives updated lists of stolen items to area pawn shops on a daily basis.
In addition, if you’re planning on being away overnight or over the weekend, notify your neighbors and let them know what vehicles may be in the driveway.
Snapp also suggested investing in motion sensor lighting and keeping shrubbery neatly trimmed to prevent suspects from using it as a hiding place.
“Don’t ever be afraid to call 911 if it’s a car or person that’s normally not on that street because it doesn’t hurt to have us check it out,” Snapp said.