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What you need to know for 01/19/2018

Break-ins rattle Saratoga Springs neighborhood

Break-ins rattle Saratoga Springs neighborhood

After a string of burglaries last year and a thwarted break-in last week, residents of the Regatta V
Break-ins rattle Saratoga Springs neighborhood
Bruce Morrow, wife Valerie, and their dog Chloe, take a walk in their neighborhood, Regatta View in Saratoga Springs, on Monday.
Photographer: Stacey Lauren-Kennedy

After a string of burglaries last year and a thwarted break-in last week, residents of the Regatta View neighborhood are ready to take matters into their own hands.

Bruce Morrow, a member of the development’s homeowners’ association, said there was serious talk of bolstering security in the affluent enclave overlooking the Fish Creek terminus with Saratoga Lake even before Thursday’s burglary. Now, he said, residents are on edge enough that they’re talking about making some collective changes to help prevent the neighborhood from being targeted by crooks.

“People are really nervous about what’s going on here,” he said Monday.

Morrow declined to discuss what is being planned. He said he’d rather burglars be surprised when they’re caught in the act.

“I have a feeling it’s only a one- or two-man crime wave, but if you get rid of them the crime wave stops,” he said.

Morrow said many residents installed security systems after several burglaries last year. Now, he said, some are talking about arming themselves.

Late Thursday evening, a homeowner on America Way spotted an intruder on her second-floor landing. The woman shouted at the man, who fled downstairs and out the front door.

Investigators with the Saratoga Springs Police were canvassing the area for the man when they stopped a suspicious-looking black sport utility vehicle on Regatta View Drive, about a third of a mile away from the burglary scene. The driver spoke with police for a moment before throwing a punch at an officer and speeding off.

The man apparently ditched the vehicle on Overlook Court and fled on foot. Investigators were able to impound the vehicle and believe evidence pulled from it will help them crack the case.

So far, no arrests have been made. But it’s still early in the investigation, said Lt. Robert Jillson, a city police spokesman.

The SUV was not reported stolen, so police are trying to track down the registered owner. Jillson said other forensic evidence was taken from the vehicle and the home.

“We are working on it,” he said. “We have a direction that were moving and we have some leads.”

America Way was also targeted by thieves last year at the same time. Three homes were burglarized and various items were stolen during a spree late April 12 and early April 13.

Morrow said the 2013 burglaries appeared to be perpetrated by someone using a ladder to gain entrance to second-floor windows, but the latest burglary appeared “less sophisticated” and he isn’t convinced the two are connected.

Jillson also wasn’t ready to say the burglaries are connected. He did, however, find the timing somewhat suspicious.

“I don’t know if it’s a coincidence,” he said. “I don’t believe in coincidence myself.”

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