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North Shore Police Warn of Rash of Local Burglaries

Homes and vehicles have been hit in a number of nearby communities. Here's how to keep yourself safe.

Patch file photo
Patch file photo
North Shore towns have been hit by a ton of home and car burglaries recently, prompting some departments to issue alerts reminding residents of how to protect themselves and their property.

The incidents include:

Highland Park Police Hit by String of Car Burglaries


Northfield Warns of Rash of North Shore Buglaries


Lake Forest Police Searching for Suspects in String of Overnight
Burglaries



Woman Charged After Northbrook Car Burglary Spree


One Winnetka Street Hit with Multiple Burglaries

And here are tips from some local departments to protect yourself and your valuables:

Winnetka police reminded residents of the following info geared toward avoiding a vehicle break-in:

1. Lock BOTH your vehicle and garage. 
2. ILLUMINATE your property with outside light timers and motion sensors. 
3. COMMUNICATE with your neighbors and watch out for each other. 
4. DO NOT leave items such as a purse, wallet, GPS or portable electronic communication devices inside of your vehicle. 
5. DO NOT leave your overhead garage door open for unnecessary periods of time. This simply advertises to everyone what you store in the garage.  

Report any suspicious activity/persons/vehicles to the Winnetka Police Department immediately by calling 911. Do not take suspicious sounds, vehicles or people for granted. PLEASE HELP US PROTECT YOUR PROPERTY AND APPREHEND THE OFFENDERS—DO NOT DELAY CALLING 911 TO REPORT SUSPICIOUS ACTIVITY. IT MIGHT BE TOO LATE IF YOU WAIT

Northfield police reminded residents of the following info geared toward avoiding a home burglary:

  • Keep doors and windows closed and securely fastened.

An open window or door is an invitation for burglars. Make sure every external door has a sturdy, well-installed deadbolt lock with a minimum of 1½ inch bolt and reinforced strike plate with 3 inch screws.

  • Secure sliding glass doors with commercially available vertical locks to prevent burglars from forcing door open or lifting it off the track.

A broomstick or metal rod placed in the track may prevent the door from being forced open, but may not stop the door from being lifted out of its track.

  • Install a peephole or wide-angle viewer in all entry doors.
  • Trim shrubbery that hides doors or windows.

Although tree and shrubbery may be beautiful, they also provide a hiding place for burglars. Cut tree limbs that could help an intruder climb into windows.

  • Keep the perimeter of your home well lighted.

Illuminate porches, entrances and front/back yards. Use timers for exterior lights or install motion detectors.

  • Never leave clues that you are away on a trip.

Put lights and a radio on timers to create the illusion that someone is at home when you go away. Leave shades, blinds, and curtains in positions to maintain a normal everyday appearance. Cancel newspapers and mail when you are out of town for a period of time.

  • Keep your yard well maintained.

Store ladders and tools inside your locked garage or basement.

  • Do not put notes on your door or leave messages on your telephone answering machine noting when you will return.
  • Do not allow "unexpected" repairmen or deliverymen entry into your home. Verify the identity of workmen before allowing entry. Never leave workers unsupervised - they could easily remove your belongings.
  • Upon your request, the Northfield Police Department will conduct a security check of your home to point out any weaknesses in security and to make recommendations to provide greater security.

In the unlikely event you have been a victim of a burglary, the following points will aid in the investigation: 

  • Keep written records of all furniture, jewelry, and electronic products. Keep smaller valuables in a secure place, such as a safety deposit box.
  • Take pictures or a video of your valuables and keep serial numbers, if possible. This will assist the Police Department in tracking recovered items as well as to document an insurance claim. 

Residents can help protect their property in vehicles by taking the following steps: 

  • Keep all valuables out of view.
  • Park in well-lit areas.
  • Utilize an alarm system.
  • Always lock your doors.
  • Do not leave your keys in your vehicle.

Residents are urged to remain vigilant and to please call the Northfield Police Department by dialing 9-1-1 to report anything suspicious. Do not take suspicious sounds or people for granted.

For instance:

  • If you see any suspicious vehicles driving slowly or repetitively through your neighborhood; or
  • Observe someone at a neighbor's front door and subsequently see them walking to the side or rear of the house.

Call 9-1-1. If possible, write down the description of the person and his or her vehicle and license plate number. If you have any questions, please call us at 847-446-2131. Through your assistance, the Northfield Police Department is better able to insure the safety of the community.

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