Atherton Police Department reports on recent community meeting about residential burglaries

by Contributed Content on February 2, 2019

The Atherton Police Department issued the following statement to follow up with information  shared with the Atherton Community on 01/31/2019 at Holbrook Palmer Park:

The Town of Atherton has had several residential burglaries over the past several months. In 2018, the Town of Atherton had a total of 22 residential burglaries. Since January 1, 2019, the Town of Atherton has had 5 residential burglaries. Many of these burglaries were committed by the suspect(s) breaking a glass door or glass window in the rear of the house, including several upper level doors and windows. Others were committed by simply opening an unlocked door or window located in the rear of the house.

Most of the burglaries were committed on Wednesdays (7 total). However, the remainder of the burglaries occurred during all days of the week. It is believed most of these burglaries occurred during hours of darkness, between 6:00 and 9:00 pm. Two of these burglaries were committed at occupied residences during the morning hours, and both of the suspects were immediately arrested. These two burglaries were not part of the recent rash of burglaries.

During the burglaries, 26% of homes had their alarm systems on, 11% of homes had their alarm systems on without the motion detectors activated, and 63% of homes either did not have their alarm on or their alarm was not working. Additionally, nine of the homes had some sort of camera system. The rest of the homes did not have an alarm system or a camera system.

Only three alarms were set off during these burglaries. Two of the homes sustained damaged rear doors, but no items were removed from within the home. The other home sustained a loss, but as of the time of this writing the loss is unknown. The Atherton Police Department responded to these alarm calls. The Atherton Police Department received no other alarm activations, and no calls from neighbors or witnesses of suspicious persons, vehicles or the sound of glass breaking at or near the burglarized properties.

The total loss sustained in these burglaries since January 1, 2018, is at least $1,991,543. The majority of items taken include jewelry, watches, handbags and clothing.

When the Atherton Police Department receives burglary reports, we complete the following: Write and review reports, enter serialized property items into the Stolen Property System database, run on-line pawn shop reports, complete wants and warrants checks on mentioned persons, use on-line databases to try and locate further information on possible suspects, communicate with other local police agencies, send and review information flyers and bulletins, submit items of evidence to the San Mateo Crime Lab for fingerprint and DNA analysis, complete search warrants when deemed necessary and appropriate, and conduct burglary suppression patrols to try and stop burglaries from occurring.

You can help us prevent residential burglaries, and increase the chances of arresting burglary suspects, by doing the following: Lock your doors and windows, use your alarm system, install a camera system, notify the Atherton Police while you are on vacation, keep exterior and interior lights on during hours of darkness, install motion lights around the exterior of your home, and become familiar with your neighbors by exchanging contact information and notifying them while you are away.

By working together we can try to reduce or eliminate residential burglaries within the Town of Atherton.

Please know that the Atherton Police Department is committed to doing everything possible to put a stop to these burglaries (extra officers on the street, following all leads, etc.) Thank you and be vigilant!

Contact: Commander Joe Wade, [email protected], 650-752-0506.

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