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Burglar Enters Homes When Owners Present

City of Grosse Pointe police are investigating two burglaries in which owners were home when the crime happened. Police warn residents to lock their doors and windows.

police are investigating two similar burglaries in which a man broke by removing a screen and in both cases the owners were home. Investigators do not yet know if the crimes are related but are warning residents to keep doors and windows locked.

In the first case, a resident discovered someone had been in her house after her dog alerted her to it July 28. The resident on Grosse Pointe Court discovered a screen on her backyard upon investigating. 

In that case, police believe the dog scared the burglar away from the home. The screen frame was dented in several areas and was taken as evidence for the case.

In the other case, a resident chased the man from her home.

The owner was downstairs in the living room while heating and cooling workers were working on her system. They left for lunch and she heard creaking sounds from upstairs.

Upon going to find out who was up there, she encountered a man who had broken into the house. He ran out a back sliding door and she chased him.  He found a safe key and entered the safe although police don't believe he was able to take anything.

A store on Mack Avenue was able to provide police with video surveillance that captured a portion of the man's getaway, according to a report.

Police sent a community warning reminding residents to keep door and windows locked. They are looking for ther person responsible for each of the crimes.

In the second burglary, the man rode a cruiser style bicycle toward Mack Avenue. A complete description of the man was not available.

Chris K August 11, 2012 at 12:35 PM
"Police sent a community warning reminding residents to keep door and windows locked. " And I guess if you would like some fresh air... get bars installed on the windows.Soon our neighborhoods will sport the same ornamental iron with deadbolts so common in the houses that remain standing in Detroit. Grosse Pointers it's time to demand that community leaders step up and organize neighborhood watch programs, use the public access channels to inform residents of what is happening and what to look for so we can assist our public safety departments and preserve our community safety. We have responsive public safety officers let's help them out! Crooks on bicycles? In the mean time, enter the phone numbers of ALL the public safety departments in your cell phone and if you see something suspicious while you are out and about (with the doors to your car locked) call them and report it. Park 822-7400 City 886-3200 Shores 881-5500 Farms 885-2100 Woods 343-2400 Harper Woods 343-2530
Julie Lattimore August 11, 2012 at 03:14 PM
Chris, Have you signed up for Nixle? Our Public Safety Department uses it to send out messages to the public. I get updates on my phone and e-mails while situations are happening. This service helps, but I agree with you, our cities should let us know about these break-ins by a source more reliable than the hit-and-miss GP News. The more knowledge we have, the more we can protect ourselves and neighbors.
CURT TRUMAN August 11, 2012 at 03:31 PM
Is it Time to Move? I'm a real estate agent and I specialized in the the Birmingham/Oakland County area. I live in Grosse Pointe and I help people move to the westside. Send me an email and I'll be happy to set up a auto notify search of your new home in Macomb and Oakland Counies.. CURTTRUMAN@AOL.COM
Chris K August 11, 2012 at 03:52 PM
Yes Julie, I have signed up for Nixle. It's just that I think we can all be vigilant for the get away bikes!
roberta mccandless August 11, 2012 at 05:38 PM
CRIME IS EVERYWHERE. WE CALLED THIS 'BLOCKBUSTING' YEARS AGO IN DETROIT AND IT CONTRIBUTED TO THE CITY'S DECLINE '
Mark August 11, 2012 at 06:09 PM
Get out of here with your fear tactics to make a buck. Let me ask you does the Birmingham Yacht Club have a good racing team?
James Gerardi August 11, 2012 at 08:43 PM
Roberta is right, blockbusting wrecked more than one decent neighborhood, and it was led by real estate agents who deliberately planted fear, then profited from the resulting sales. On the other hand, the police are not helpful when they say, "Lock your windows." That makes residents prisoners of their own homes. Windows are made to be opened, and they should be when weather permits. I say to the police, Increase patrols very visibly so that the word goes out not to mess with the Pointes. I can't remember the last time I saw a patrolling police car on my street in the Farms. Consistently visible police presence and resident alertness are the best detrerrents.
A mills August 11, 2012 at 11:36 PM
Sorry to tell u James but the boys in the hood are messing with the pointes
Diane Smith August 12, 2012 at 01:38 AM
Go near my windows and doors and I will have some .357 for you.
James Gerardi August 12, 2012 at 02:13 AM
The remark above addressed to me about "the boys in the hood" has a racial tinge to it which I reject. The biggest cat burglar in the Pointes this year -- a guy who entered several homes on and near Lakeshore over a period of two or three weeks while the owners were home -- was a caucasian from Eastpointe. Go back and look at G P News "public safety reports" from decades ago, and you'll find burglaries, shoplifting, and thefts committed by Pointe teenagers. There is indeed spill-over crime from Detroit in Grosse Pointe, but the answer to ALL crime here is a vigorous and visible police presence on the streets. That was the point of my posting, and that's where the emphasis should be, in my opinion.
Amills August 12, 2012 at 04:04 AM
Nothing racial here James I'm black and I live in the pointes near Harper woods and I catch the young thugs all the time. And I'm sick of it my friend. Police can't stop it when these fools do their dirt and run across Moross like its the Olympics. The spill is from Detroit and don't forget Harper woods. So protect your property dont wait for police cars buddy. That charger and mustang drivin around doesn't matter
Chace Wakefield August 12, 2012 at 05:00 AM
Check the overall stars before you panic. Hyperlocal news has some people hypersensitive.
Chris K August 12, 2012 at 11:46 AM
Chace, getting reports on crime stats is no more hyperlocal than knowing when and where the next garden club meeting will meet. And pardon me for being hypersensitive when I am told by the local police department that I need to lock my windows on a summer day.
James Gerardi August 12, 2012 at 06:01 PM
Thanks, Amills, for the clarification. I appreciate having your perspective.
GP For Life August 12, 2012 at 11:12 PM
Curt, thank you for trying to capitalize on my neighbors' misfortunes for your own personal gain. We, as a community, appreciate this type of money-grubbing opportunism reflecting your personal and professional poor taste. On behalf of our community I would also like to thank for your kind offer to fill our inboxes full of your automatically generated spam. On a more personal note, I will be wearing skinny-jeans and douche-font t-shirts before I will be purchasing a house from anyone with an AOL email address. AOL email addresses are for camgirls and gold farmers. It is puzzling to me as to why someone in this community would seek to undermine the foundation of the very community they live in. Decorum prevents me from floating hypotheses on this forum but I assure they do not reflect positively on you. Perhaps you should move to Birmingham from where you can orchestrate your campaign of ignorance and self-interest? Personally, I will stay here winning yacht races and enjoying neighbors with a basic sense of decency and proper manners.
Harrison Martin August 12, 2012 at 11:39 PM
To all. I am a retired police officer living in Harper Woods. In reading the comments they are all good. It is true that marked scout cars and uniformed officers patrolling definitely has an impact. However it is also true that the police cannot be everywhere. The culprits planning to commit a crime will be looking out for those marked scout cars just as you are. There is no stronger crime prevention than a neighborhood or community that looks out for each other. I tell my neighbors all of the time that if something does not look right and/or if something or someone looks out of the normal they should observe, pick up that phone and call for the police. Continue to monitor the activity and do not approach the parties involved. The police response in our cities is incredible and believe me they will respond, investigate and handle the situation accordingly. You can tell the 911 operator that you do not want the police to respond to your home if you are simply calling in suspicious activity. Keep asking your police departments for the increased police patrols however keep your eyes and ears open at all times. Martin
walden schmidt August 13, 2012 at 12:58 AM
James Gerardi - That’s one example and an odd one where someone who grew up in the Pointes comes back to burglarize houses where he grew up and his parents still live. If you look at these types of crimes across several months, over the majority are committed by people living in Detroit.
Wendy August 13, 2012 at 02:41 PM
Curt, I hope you also specialize in relocating westsiders to our lovely community. Birmignham has had a well-publicized increase in crime, including a shooting in its downtown. Do you spread fear mongering there too? By the way, is this how Cranbrook Realtors operates? I would have thought they would find this tactic to be in very poor taste. I guess it's not as stand-up of an operation as I had given it credit.
Savvy Shopper August 13, 2012 at 04:38 PM
Folks, I am am also alarmed at the news of break-ins while people are home. However, this guy Curt is a washed up Soap Opera actor who moved into the Real Estate business. He is not local and he does not live in Grosse Pointe (or the west side). He is out of LA. Pay no attention to him. He just wants to make money. Google him if you are interested.
GP For Life August 13, 2012 at 08:43 PM
Wendy, while we would like those cut of the right cloth to join us, I believe we should set up some sort of screening process, or maybe even a point system, to help us determine if we would like to welcome particular outsiders. Otherwise we could end up with a bunch of people who pay $90 for t-shirts and drive imports around like they were Hellen Keller on crack. At which point, I would just give up.
Chad Bateman August 14, 2012 at 02:27 PM
Sorry Curt, I don't own any Affliction or Ed Hardy apparel. I wouldn't fit in on the westside.
MRSPirateLarz August 14, 2012 at 03:47 PM
I lived in the Farms up until 2 1/2 years ago when I relocated to the Woods. Since I have moved, I have seen more police cars randomly roll by my house then I ever saw in the 29 years I lived in the Farms (and there was an Officer who would visit his mother down the street from us almost everyday!). I love the Farms, but they do need to Patrol more! And the Neighborhood Watch idea is excellent! One thing that I love about all the Pointes is the comradely that exists with one's neighbors. If that sense of security could be only slightly extended then perhaps there would be less bike thefts, break-ins, car-related thefts, etc... Oh and I am not belittling the Farms, they have an excellent police force and is a wonderful city to live in!
Chris K August 14, 2012 at 04:03 PM
MRSP..: I believe the only way we may make headway in organizing Neighborhood Watch programs is if residents go to their respective city councils and city managers and demand that they take a leadership role to initiate these programs. Or residents organize as one to make such a request. We need a combined and coordinated and continuous patrol up an down Mack - one that is visible either with patrol cars, on foot or with police on bicycles, not the crooks. Locking our doors and windows is not a deterrent and it impinging on the quality of life this community has known for generations. For those who come out to their vehicles only to find the wheels missing, what is the solution? Lock the cars in your garage? And if one has no garage or multiple cars - hire a security guard? We should not overreact but we should not be intimidated to be proactive so that our community remains safe and livable.
Karen August 15, 2012 at 10:51 PM
All Park Passes should come with decal to put on your LH rear bumper with the initials of your GP. A little way to recognize your neighbors, recognize and assist strangers, or make you more aware of cruising vehicles w/o the sticker. Could be a new one every year in a different color. I think this year's should mirror the clever fish sculptures. Oh, I also believe good fences make good neighbors, not stockade ones, per se, but more decorative wood ro wrought iron ones. And, they sure discourage folks coming in the back from the next house or the next block over.
Kurt Doelle September 15, 2012 at 02:59 PM
G.P. FOR LIFE IS SPOT ON! I expect to protect this city from those who wish to steal, damage and rob. I am thankful to have so many caring, bright and heroic neighbors who stand against crime, drugs and moral bankruptcy. Take one shot at a thief and and watch it run from the light. Scum is easily intimidated by focused light. The West side is missing the culture, integrity, architecture and history that we enjoy and share. Again, support local and do not hesitate to confront your innate suspicions.

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