Residents near string of home invasions concerned

photo by staff
Thursday, January 16, 2014 - 1:43am

One could see a school bus and bike riders near Tara and Goodwood. It's a pretty quiet neighborhood, but just days before, it was a crime scene.

BRPD is investigating a string of three break-ins where two ended in sexual battery. While one Glen Oaks woman in her thirties was able to escape, a 73-year old in Webb Park and a 78-year old in the Tara/Goodwood area both fell victim to this crime.

"We don't have a connection amongst all three, but we want to raise
the awareness to individuals out in the community to be on alert," said Cpl. L'Jean McKneely with BRPD.

But because the victims had their homes locked, people who live and work nearby say they're searching for other ways to be safe. "It's scary; it's right outside our back door," said Deborah Johnson who works near the area.

Her co-worker, Amber, said "As soon as people heard about it, they started calling me while I was at work. It's hard because at night now, whenever we leave, we all
have to work together and we all have to leave at the same time."

Cpl. McKneely added, "If you are a believer in having homeowner protection, make sure you have that protection nearby so you won't have to actually go look for

Deborah Johnson is one of those people who say locking doors is not enough.
"I definitely carry something on me when I walk in the building. I have to. Well I was devastated, I'm a woman, I come to work early in the
morning, and I'm by myself." Chad Hedrick, who owns Barking Irons Firearms, said "When there's rumors or if it's in the news that's it's a lot of home invasions, or burglaries or anything like that, you will show a number spike as far as people coming in the door, just wanting to see what you've got, getting more information and educating themselves."

But if you don't want to be armed with a firearm, officials say be armed with some know-how.

"I highly recommend self defense for ladies. If you have an alarm system, make sure to cut it on. Check your windows and doors make sure they're locked at night"

And when it comes to sliding doors, a piece a 2x4 in the door's track, may just be the only thing separating you and your family from an intruder.

But despite the concerns, residents have hope that these crimes will come to a stop.
"I hope they catch him soon. for him to pry on the elderly like that?" said Deborah.
"That's bad." Amber added, "I shouldn't have to feel like i need protection. it's just hard."


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