Bay Area crime heats up as temperatures do

The hot weather may be making your home a target for thieves. If you open windows to stay cool, you'll want to be very careful.

Palo Alto has already seen a 20 percent jump in break-ins in the past two months and now that it's hot, officers are on high alert because one open window could mean an open invitation for thieves.

Det. Sgt. Brian Philip is making a few extra rounds on Palo Alto streets to warn residents.

"Louis and Greer have been hit more than some of the other streets," Philip said.

He wants to check on local hot spots before the thieves do because when it's hot, the windows open and burglars sneak in. Philip is focusing on neighborhoods along Crescent Park, Embarcadero, and Oregon Expressway -- prime break in territory.

"Here's an open garage and you can see the driveway is unsecured," Philip points out.

But something on Hamilton Avenue catches his eye.

"There are no cars in the driveway and a couple of open gates," Philip said.

After taking a look around even a neighbor questions the officer because he looks suspicious.

But over and over again we kept finding open windows in empty houses, especially windows on the second floor -- something long-time Palo Alto residents admit is kind of a habit here.

"When I'm not home, the only ones I keep open are on the second floor and they are above a car port," Carol Winitsky of Palo Alto said.

Palo Alto police have seen thieves still manage to sneak in through top floor windows. The department is using Twitter and community outreach to spread the word during this heat wave.
Related Topics:
homehome invasioncrimeburglaryEast Palo Alto
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