Foothills residents taking extra precautions after recent burglaries

Credit: Deren Martinez/KTVB

Foothills residents taking extra precautions after recent burglaries

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by Scott Evans

Bio | Email | Follow: @ScottEvansKTVB

KTVB.COM

Posted on February 26, 2014 at 5:21 PM

Updated Thursday, Feb 27 at 11:09 AM

BOISE -- There are a lot worried resident who live near the north Boise Foothills after several recent reports of home burglaries in the area.

Some people we spoke with say it’s a violating feeling to have someone in your home.

That's why residents are taking precautions and police are warning people what to watch for.

Eight burglaries have been reported since November, and two of those occurred last weekend.

"It's really scary, especially with having a little one,” said Jessica Oplt who lives right below the foothills. “We feel good because we do have a dog and she's a great protector, but you know, you want to take care of what yours and your own."

She is now taking extra precautions to protect her family in the event of a break-in.

"This morning we upped our insurance on our house and we made sure to record everything and took photographs of all of our stuff," said Oplt.

While police can't say for sure the same criminals are behind all the break-ins, they say the burglaries do have a lot in common.

Police say the thieves are targeting homes on the weekends, ones that don't have any lights on, and homes that back up to open space.

"Not leaving the lights on will be an invitation to these guys," said Mike Kostanecki who lives in the foothills.

Kostanecki has been worried about the possibility of this type of crime for years. That's why he's taken precautions.

"We have lights there and lights there," said Kostanecki.

"So anybody that comes in your backyard?" asked KTVB.

"They'll be lit up," replied Kostanecki.

And that's what police recommend, have motion sensors and timers on lights inside and outside your home.

Since these criminals are cutting the power and phone lines, it is a good idea to have security cameras and lights on back-up batteries whenever possible.

"I just want them to get caught," said Kostanecki.  "It's getting pretty serious."

Police say the thieves are stealing high-end items and jewelry.  They are getting inside through the back of the home.

And if you are planning on leaving town, make sure someone is watching your home.

Another option used by an increasing number of people in Boise is nextdoor.com.

Nextdoor has been around for about three years now, creating private social media sites for neighborhoods.

In January, Boise Police partnered with the company to send out and warn homeowners about crimes and other important information.

Using that system, BPD sent out information, on Monday, about the burglaries happening in the Boise foothills.

That information went out to five neighborhood groups that are signed up on Nextdoor.

That information from police told people to be alert for suspicious activity, talk to your neighbors about what's going on in your area and make sure you have security features in and around your home.

In the past month, BPD has used nextdoor.com to match stolen property to its owner and warn people about a bank robbery in their area.

Since the partnership began the number of people signed up has grown from 3,800 to 5,500.

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