www.baltimoresun.com/news/maryland/baltimore-county/towson/ph-tt-residential-burglaries-0226-20140221,0,3595577.story

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Towson police commander warns of rise in daytime home burglaries

By Jon Meoli, jmeoli@tribune.com

1:50 PM EST, February 21, 2014

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Towson precinct's police commander during a community meeting Thursday urged residents to be vigilant in their communities, because the area is experiencing an increase in daytime residential burglaries.

"Take it back to your communities, and make sure you watch your neighbor's homes if you are home all day, because that's what's increasing now," Capt. Richard Howard told a collection of community leaders at Thursday's monthly Greater Towson Council of Community Associations meeting at the Pickersgill Retirement Community.

Howard said police suspect the burglars are monitoring which residents leave their houses empty for work during the day, then smashing rear windows or doors and burglarizing those homes.

According to the crime trends report posted on the Baltimore County Police website, six such daytime burglaries have occurred in Loch Raven Village since Jan. 23.

The police crime trend reports state that most are occurring between 6 a.m. and 6 p.m., with two burglaries within the smaller time frame of 1 p.m. and 2:30 p.m. In one case, the burglary occurred over a multiple-day period, police said.

In five of the six cases, glass in rear doors or rear windows were broken, with the rear door pried open in another case. The burglars took jewelry, a sound system, watches and liquor, among other items.

Most recently, burglaries were reported in the 1400 block of Putty Hill Avenue and the 1600 block of Hardwick Road. In the former, a person smashed a basement window and stole two bottles of liquor between 6 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Feb. 15. In the Hardwick Road burglary, a person smashed a basement window and stole jewelry from the home between 4 p.m. Feb. 15 and 8:30 p.m. Feb. 17.

During Thursday's meeting, Wesley Wood, director of the Precinct 6 Towson Police Community Relations Council, touted some of the services available from county police that could help prevent home burglaries.

Wood said that the Community Outreach section of the Towson precinct offers free residential security surveys, when an officer can come to a home and complete an inspection that tells residents where they are vulnerable to burglaries.

Residents who ask for the survey will receive a recommendation report from the officer that details what could be done to increase home security.

Wood also said residents who are going out of town can fill out a form at the precinct that brings officers to the house during the midnight shift to check on security. Wood said residents should contact the Community Outreach division of the precinct at 410-887-5933 for more information.