Community Post

Burglars Caught

It’s been a recurring problem for months: reports of three younger men breaking into houses in Madison Valley and up the hill towards the fancy part of Capitol Hill. (see here, here, here, and here)

Their MO is to go knocking on doors and see if anyone responds. If someone comes to the door, they ask a lame question such as “have you seen my dog” or “do you know where the nearest AT&T store is”. If not, the 3 make their way into the backyard and break into the house. They apparently move quick and have avoided capture even when the police response time has been good.

But today their luck ran out when a neighbor in the 2600 block of E. Aloha saw them breaking into the house next door. Police arrived within 5 minutes, went inside, and captured all three. And evidently they were in possession of a large amount of cash, including various foreign currencies, so you may want to call Seattle police if you had a recent break-in and had some unusual cash stolen.

At this point it’s not clear whether they are juveniles or adults. We’re keeping our eye on the jail bookings to find out more about them and hopefully track them through the wheels of justice. We’ll let you know if we find out more…

0 thoughts on “Burglars Caught

  1. Hopefully there is sufficient evidence to connect these three to the other break-ins.

    And a big shout-out to the neighbor who made the call on these 3!
    And yay for the police to show up in a relatively short time.

  2. This sounds like the guys that robbed our house last Friday, from the description & MO that the police gave us on the most likely suspects.

    We are out many laptops, digital cameras and some jewelry, not to mention our large insurance deductible, window replacement and lock changing fee, security cameras that we installed and the huge hassle that goes along with all of this.

    On the bright side, we are all unharmed ( we were not in the house at the time, around 1pm on Friday afternoon) and the police were awesome. I was pleasantly surprised with the attention that the police gave us. They (three officers) were at our house a long time, taking fingerprints and giving us advice on what to do next.

    By the way, we had large dogs in the house, didn’t seem to deter them.

  3. My wife and I live on E. Aloha. About a month ago we awoke to someone trying to kick our front door in at 1am. After turning on the lights, they left. Luckily they didn’t get in. They first tried getting in some first floor windows that I had open earlier in the day. Good thing I locked them. The cops were great and said it’s rare for someone to try and break in at that time. They said it was most likely someone on drugs, or they had the wrong house. One of the cops that responded to our 911 call, called me later that morning to tell me that there was another kick in attempt close to us shortly after our incident. We have beefed up all our security, sense then. I’m not sure if these guys are the ones who came by our house, but I was home when the cops caught them in the house down the street. Great job!

  4. I would love to know what security cameras folks are installing on their homes. I’ve been planning to do that myself (as burglar alarms don’t seem to actually prevent break-ins).

  5. We had a similar experience two weeks ago. On a Sunday afternoon we stepped out for a moment to go and pickup food. When we came home our dogs(terrible watchdogs apparently) didn’t greet us at the door. After the dogs sheepishly came upstairs from their hiding space we found jewelry and laptops missing.

    Apparently the thieves jumped from our back porch to a small window. We were then certain that we should start a search for our missing items at the Cirque de Solei tent in Marymoor park! Kidding aside, this has been an unfortunately regular occurance in our neighborhood and I’m glad that at least one set of the thieves were caught.

  6. Hi, it’s me again, (Capitol Hill Mom). We bought a wireless system at Costco. There were three to choose from I believe, at the Seattle Costco. I don’t know how well it works, but it is weird to have cameras pointing out the windows of my home.

  7. First, the comment: I think it is both wonderful that alert neighbors made the difference in catching these punks and I think it speaks horribly of our neighborhood that people need to install security cameras. What can we do, more than we are already doing, to rid these thieving scum from our neighborhood?

    A question: About a month ago, I was at home around 10pm on a Friday, watching a movie. All of a sudden, somebody knocked on the door and I went to look to see who it was. I looked thru the peep hole and saw two gentlemen I’d never seen before. Asked what they wanted, they said they were looking for “Joe”. When told no Joe lived there and they might be at the wrong house, they left.

    I was pretty freaked out and thought they were casing my place. My barking dog probably helped my case, but would calling the police to report this make any sense? What do you even report?

  8. It’s important to note that property crime is widespread in all neighborhoods. We see them talking about it all the time on West Seattle Blog.

    As for the people-knocking-on-your-door case, I would suggest trusting your gut instinct. If the people seem suspicious to you, call 911 and report a “Suspicious Circumstance.” Be sure to have a good description of the knockers in mind and explain to the dispatcher why you think they might be up to no good. If police have time, they’ll drive by and look for the subjects in the area and at least stop to talk to them if they run across them. And if they really are going door to door and several people report them, it will definitely get the attention of the dispatchers.

  9. The cops told me that if you get any of these suspicious door-knocking people, you should not open the door and yell to them that you are calling the police. I say first call the police and THEN yell to them that you already called the police.

    It’s a shame that we can’t even open our doors when the doorbell is rung. :(

  10. This sounds like the same guys who surprised my neighbor during the day a couple of weeks ago and punched him in the face when he didn’t hand over his cell phone. Very glad to know they have been apprehended.

  11. that robbed our house on 32nd two weeks ago in madrona. 3 older teens broke in the back door during the lunch hour and stole all the electronics (if it blinked they took it). The officer said they hadn’t heard of any other robbery’s in the neighborhood. Through the people in the area we’ve heard the opposite! They loaded everything up in a suit case and walk right out the front door. I hope it’s the same guys – we also looked at security systems but would be interested in hearing peoples comments.

  12. Sounds like the police are having a hard time keeping these guys in custody. There was another similar-sounding burglary yesterday. From the Madrona Moms email list:

    “I wanted to let you know that we were broken into yesterday afternoon, must have been at 3:00-3:30ish just before I got home from work. Our neighbour actually saw the guys leaving with our musical instruments (baritone sax, my acoustic guitar and my son’s acoustic) and thought they were people that we knew! The police got a group of teenagers (3 of them) in a stolen car while the officers were at our house investigating the break in. Apparently one of them is 17 so unable to be put away, but has been picked off 5 times in the past 6 months! They think the others are about 16. Another house on 30th got hit for instruments recently too. We have not had a good experience since moving to Madrona, supposedly a “better” area. We never had any problems over on 24th Ave!

    “These guys are really ballsy. They broke the basement window and came up through the house. I think they were frightened off by our dog who sleeps upstairs often.

    “Please be careful everyone. This feels so very bad. The detectives know who these kids are but apparently the judges are making it difficult to get warrants. We know the stuff must be in one of their houses!”

  13. We had some robbers kick in our back doors a couple years ago (Cap Hill). We have an alarm, and it was on (it went off, and we yelled downstairs immediately we had already called the police). But basically the ass-hats came in, grabbed a wallet and cell (stupid us for leaving it in the kitchen, which i haven’t done since) and ran. Even dropped the cell on the way out. They were gone before I could even make it down the stairs.

    I cancelled all my CCs immediately, and so they really only made out with like $50 in cash. They also charged one tank of gas for their getaway car (with spinners and a bumpin’ sound system, I’m sure). Of course we were stuck with $2000 worth of repair costs b/c of the non-standardness of our old doors, plus the anxiety, and the months of not being able to fully use our back entrance. It’s that kind of calculus that just kills me. It also applies to things like car prowls, where you pay $500 or $1000 to repair your windows after some jerk-off keys your car, smashes your window and makes off with $10 in pocket change.

    At the time the police came with dogs and the dogs followed a trail that led them to several house along our same alley. Apparently the perps were casing other homes too and ours just happened to have a visible item worth stealing. So now we make extra sure to keep stuff like wallets and purses out of view. Along with stronger doors and some secondary bolts, it should help, but we still have a TV in our living room, and original windows. I’m sure if someone broke in when we weren’t home, they could easily get our computers, etc. What are we gonna do? Have an empty first floor? Lock away all our computers behind metal cages?

    Oh, and we have a dog. Nothing stops a methed-up miscreant in an under-policed city where property crime gets almost no attention. I think they target the “nicer” parts of Madrona, Cap Hill, Montlake, etc. b/c there’s no money to be stealing from their homies and such where they live.

  14. Check it out. King 5 News is hopefully going to do a story on these break ins.