A string of struck Highland Park and Deerfield last weekend marking an increase in burglaries along the North Shore.
One attempted and one successful burglary were reported in Highland Park and another burglary was reported in Deerfield, according to the Highland Park and Deerfield police departments.
"Throughout Northern Illinois there's been an increase in residential burglaries," said Commander Jerry Cameron. He said the increase is "not uncommon" during the holiday season.
One of the victims of the weekend burglary spree, a Deerfield resident who asked to remain anonymous when speaking to Patch, explained what happened last Saturday night when she and her husband went out for dinner in Highland Park. Her children had slept out that night, so the house was empty.
"We came home, our kitchen was messed up and we heard wind coming from the front door," she said.
The burglars stole $400 in cash from the Warwick Road household, according to a Deerfield police report. Though electronics, including an iPad, an iPod and a laptop, were sitting out, they were not taken. The backyard furniture had been moved, leading the victim to suspect that someone had been out back keeping watch.
"They must have known what they were doing," the Deerfield resident said.
Police suspect some of these burglaries are related, according to Cameron, who said in the Deerfield burglary and in one of the Highland Park burglaries blunt force was used to break open a rear window door.
Cameron encourages residents to report unusual activity without hesitation. If residents see an unfamiliar vehicle or person approaching someone's home, they should call it in.
"Most burglaries take only a few minutes," Cameron said. "Pausing can mean the difference between apprehension and escape by burglars."
The City of Highland Park issued a news release Wednesday morning asking residents to do the following in order to deter future burglaries:
- Report suspicious vehicles or persons to the police department without delay.
- Remain vigilant in locking exterior doors and windows.
- Utilize alarm systems when leaving your home, even when leaving for a short while.
- Leave exterior lights turned on near doors and other possible access windows.
- Keep landscaping in these areas to a minimum; and
- Be a good neighbor and report any unusual activity to the police department without delay. Most burglaries take only a few minutes from entry to escape. Pausing to consider your observations or contacting others to confirm suspicion before calling the police could mean the difference between an apprehension and successful escape by the burglars.