Posted by Terry Alexander - email
HOPEWELL, VA (WWBT) - To alert residents about a spike in home break-ins, Hopewell police hit the streets Friday.
Thieves are getting into houses through back windows and doors. Police are encouraging residents to be on alert and to report any suspicious activity. It's a message they're delivering to neighbors by going door to door.
The crimes are happening in the Dellrose area of the city, usually during the day or early evening hours when homeowners are at work.
Items taken during the crimes range from laptop computers to video games. In one case a 42 inch television was stolen.
Many neighbors seemed surprised by the news. One resident, who did not want to appear on camera, calls the situation alarming.
"I got new locks, changed everything since I heard about all the break-ins, especially since there was a break-in right across the street from me."
In an effort to eliminate the problem police are encouraging residents to start a neighborhood watch and to report suspicious activity.
"Hopefully with citizens and us working together we can accomplish something and make this a safe neighborhood," said Hopewell Police Department Lt. Roger Dean.
Some residents say they're afraid to talk out of fear of retaliation. Patricia Williams says not talking gives the criminals power.
"I want it to be known that this is our neighborhood. You can't just come in here and disrupt our lives (and) take what we've worked for. Get you a job. A paying job," said Williams.
Williams says she doesn't want to be the next victim.
"I watch. I watch everything," she said.
Watching and responding. Two key elements police say will help combat crime. If you have any information on the break-ins in the Dellrose area call Crime Solvers at 541 2202.