Rash of daytime burglaries breaks out on North Whidbey

The Island County Sheriff's Office is warning North Whidbey residents about a rash of daytime burglaries.

Sheriff Mark Brown sent out an "e-lert" to citizens Friday morning, echoing a warning from the Oak Harbor Police Department last month. Both agencies have seen increases in the number of daytime burglaries and in the amount of jewelry being stolen, which detectives believe may be related to the high price of gold and silver.

"The common theme," Brown wrote, "involves someone knocking on the front door and (if no one answers) then access is made into the home, either through an unlocked door or somewhere else that ease of entry can be made."

Brown indicated that the burglars are taking smaller items, like jewelry, cash, silver and gold items. He pointed out that it's easier for intruders to ransack a home if they are focusing on smaller items, which can also be sold easier than larger, more cumbersome property.

"Please ensure that your homes are properly locked and also that items like loose jewelry are placed away in secure areas of your residence," Brown wrote. "Also be sure to report suspicious activity in and around your homes; activity like someone knocking on doors with no apparent reason or otherwise trying to get information that seems peculiar or threatening."

Brown urged residents to communicate with neighbors they trust to watch over homes in the neighborhood, particularly when someone is gone. Forming neighborhood watch groups is another step that can be taken to prevent becoming a victim of crime, the sheriff said.

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