Wednesday, Mar 12, 2014
Crime Tracker: Herrin Burglaries
WILLIAMSON COUNTY -- Neighbors may still be on edge, but police say they've made strides in cracking down on a string of burglaries. They credit a series of arrests in recent months.
The past 12 months have challenged Herrin police: 221 burglary calls for homes and cars since December of last year. Officer David Dorris says the crimes picked up over the warmer months.
"It was across the board. We had some in the daylight hours some in the evening hours." Dorris said.
Victims seemingly chosen at random in residential neighborhoods.
"Assumption is they were going to the residence, knocking on the door. No one answers and that was giving them that target of opportunity," he explained.
At its peak, there were 37 burglary calls this past August. July and May followed closely after with 29 and 23 respectively.Burglars typically kicked in the doors of locked homes.
Police arrested one suspect as he was breaking into a home on the 200 block of s. 21st street in the beginning of November. Neighbors say it's not the first time their neighborhood was targeted.
Chris Rebman lives on that street, where officers made the arrest of 36-year-old James Dwyer.
"I have no clue what changed, I just started hearing about break-ins and they were all close by..It got pretty scary there for a while," Rebman added.
He says once his quiet area changed, so did he.
"We double checked all of our doors and locks and everything and started leaving lights on everywhere and kept something by the bed in case somebody broke in," said Rebman.
In November, the number of burglaries dropped to eight. Police attribute the decline to cooperation with neighboring departments to make key arrests.
"Sometimes burglars don't necessarily pick one town to burglarize. They expand their horizons, go to neighboring communities," Dorris explained.
Rebman says an active neighborhood watch has also helped.
We've heard from viewers concerned about drug problems in Herrin. Police will only say they are working on the issues.
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