Over the past several weeks Guilford has been the target of an increased number of home burglaries. According to the Guilford Police Department, the department is actively investigating nine incidences that have taken place since June 30.
On Aug. 8, Guilford Police Chief Jeff Hutchinson said since an Aug. 5 press release on the spree, two more burglaries have occurred. However, as officers continue to investigate, Hutchinson said one of the more recent incidents has provided clues as to how the suspects operate and what they might look like.
“The [incident] yesterday was interrupted and we were not able to locate the person, but what they are doing is knocking on the door or ringing the doorbell, which is not unusual to try and see if someone is home,” he said. “If someone answers the door it is, ‘Oh I am looking for so and so or do you have directions or I am selling this.’”
Hutchinson said if residents have experienced a similar situation in recent weeks or do in the future, they shouldn’t assume the people at the door are actually lost or trying to sell something.
“If it seems unusual and they just kind of walk away, they were probably looking to see if someone was home and if no one was home, then the door gets kicked in or a window gets cut and they climb in,” said Hutchinson.
While Hutchinson said there is no one area in town the suspects seem to be targeting, he said all of the incidents have occurred during the day and at homes that are set back from the road. The suspects are willing to force entry into the homes and are not just looking for doors that have been left unlocked.
The suspects have taken jewelry, electronics, small items, and in one case a gun, from the homes. Hutchinson said the police have a possible description of the suspects—late 20s to early 30s, male, white, tall, and thin—but said that description does not exclude other possibilities.
“That doesn’t mean that is what we are limited to,” he said. “That is just some information that we have.”
Hutchinson said he is in contact with neighboring police departments, but no similar pattern of incidents has occurred in the surrounding area. Investigations are still ongoing and the police department asks residents to close and lock all windows and doors, and activate burglar alarm systems if their homes are equipped.
To report suspicious activity in your neighborhoods, call the Guilford Police Department routine line 203-453-8061; call 911 in the event of an emergency.