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#270721 - 03/07/08 11:55 AM Recent Thefts and Break Ins  
Joined: Mar 2008
Posts: 1
Sally Furman Offline
Sally Furman  Offline
In the past few weeks our home and that of our next door neighbor have been broken into and expensive items such as lap tops, cameras, and cash have been stolen. We're located north of Journey's End about a half mile. Has anyone else in this area had a similar experience?

#270735 - 03/07/08 12:25 PM Re: Recent Thefts and Break Ins [Re: Sally Furman]  
Joined: May 2000
Posts: 6,706
Amanda Syme Offline
Amanda Syme  Offline
Fences, dogs, caretakers, security cameras and locking doors and windows are still the rules to be abided. This type of thievery is rife but steps can be taken to minimize the risk of becoming a victim.

#270784 - 03/07/08 04:33 PM Re: Recent Thefts and Break Ins [Re: Amanda Syme]  
Joined: Aug 2001
Posts: 232
tincup Offline
tincup  Offline
Were these items left out in the open, or did the thieves have to make an effort to get at them - that is, were they locked away? Something visible is always more likely to taken. Often they don't want to stick around long enough to try to "find" things. Small valuable items that can easily be turned into cash are most vulnerable.

I'm just trying to find out what kind of thieves these are so that I can better protect my property and the safety of my guests.

#270788 - 03/07/08 04:48 PM Re: Recent Thefts and Break Ins [Re: SP Daily]  
Joined: Mar 2007
Posts: 73
oughwl Offline
oughwl  Offline
North Palms house south of Costa Maya was broken into twice within a week of each other. T.V, CD player stolen. Smashed and entered through a rear window during the day between 9 am - 12 noon. Once when guests were in residence.
A villa at Los Encantos was also broken into during the day in the same period of time, with guests in residence.
Not a good picture for the tourism industry.

#270792 - 03/07/08 05:05 PM Re: Recent Thefts and Break Ins [Re: oughwl]  
Joined: Mar 2007
Posts: 73
oughwl Offline
oughwl  Offline
Locked hurricane shutters and a locked window didn't stop the North Palms thief. Neither will a show by BDF, engagement within the full time community will provide the information necessary to find, and stop this one and prevent many others.

#270867 - 03/08/08 11:08 AM Re: Recent Thefts and Break Ins [Re: oughwl]  
Joined: Oct 2001
Posts: 5,917
Diane Campbell Offline
Diane Campbell  Offline
When a place gets hit once, you either beef up security or count on getting hit repeatedly.
The events Sally refers to have occured with houses that were not locked.

IMHO neighborhood watches are the place to swap detailed info on locations, etc ---- message boards are public access (even to those thieves with the new laptop...).


News from last week .........
The Belize Police Deputy Commissioner was in LA area (North Hollywood) for an anti-gang conference. He and two federal marshalls went out to an auto parts store during a break. As they approached the store an armed robber burst out of hte front doors, brandishing a knife. One of the Marshalls shot him dead. The Belizean Police Officer was quoted as saying this was his first trip to LA, and that he had been warned that it was a dangerous place. Nonetheless, he said he would return.

#270874 - 03/08/08 11:24 AM Re: Recent Thefts and Break Ins [Re: Diane Campbell]  
Joined: Oct 2001
Posts: 5,917
Diane Campbell Offline
Diane Campbell  Offline
Guests should lock doors and windows when they go out. Caretakers need to survey properties and secure vacant rooms if the guest has forgotten to lock up.
In more remote/personal type places, it would likewise be a good idea for guests to inform onsite caretakers when they leave and also say more or less when they expect to return ....... along with taking extra care to watch over the vacant room or cottage, the caretaker can also turn on house-lights for them if they are planning to return after dark, watch for their return (helping to carry their packages etc.) and know to alert somebody if a guest goes missing substantially longer than planned.

Advisable for rental properties to have a lockbox or safe for guest use.

#270898 - 03/08/08 01:36 PM Re: Recent Thefts and Break Ins [Re: Diane Campbell]  
Joined: Mar 2007
Posts: 73
oughwl Offline
oughwl  Offline
Diane makes important points. Everyone should be aware of their surroundings and the possibility, (even in shangri-la) of those that wish to take from others rather than take care of things themselves. It is important that the local community is fully informed and engaged in combating this issue. If they know they are being observed more diligently they may be prevented from victimizing others.Is there a formal network of neighborhood watch programs as well as information sharing outlets in place and contact info for those involved? For all areas of the island.

#270908 - 03/08/08 02:42 PM Re: Recent Thefts and Break Ins [Re: oughwl]  
Joined: Jan 2008
Posts: 10
JMarie Offline
JMarie  Offline
YES! Doug and I attended and joined the North Ambergris Caye Neighborhood Watch meeting last month and still need to obtain neighbors names and phone numbers, etc.

In Tres Cocos, we have had several instances lately - Break in attempts (bike stolen from porch) I personally had an uncomfortable encounter and subsequent following (stalking) with someone late Sunday night outside of Palapa Bar.

We are new to the island and would greatly appreciate any guidance relative to neighborhood watch participation.

Thanks Jean

#271018 - 03/09/08 11:20 AM Re: Recent Thefts and Break Ins [Re: JMarie]  
Joined: Oct 2001
Posts: 5,917
Diane Campbell Offline
Diane Campbell  Offline
Dislcosure - I was a bartender for almost a decade and was a part-owner of a very busy bar.
My observations based on that experience ......... This kind of business is a magnet for difficulty. Bars are where people drink alcohol. Even one alcoholic drink changes your impulse control and perception. I think it's safe to say that at night at least half a bar's customers are there to get at least a little bit drunk. Drunks do strange things. The later at night the drunker they get. The drunker they get the less well they function --- and they become great targets for muggings, get into boat and traffic accidents, and/or tend to get into "miunderstandings" that can turn violent.

My guess is that there are not so many stalkings, muggings or stabbings outside AA meetings, church services or afternoon picnics. Even if you are stone-cold sober you are still at risk late at night around a bar.

Owners of bars are making a profit on selling something that tends to make people behave abnormally. IMHO bar-owners should do their part to protect neighbors, customers, themselves and the community in general from the enevitable side-effects of their profit-making enterprise. This includes having a security guard, good lighting, minimun cash on site, and a policy of not serving people to the point of falling down. I can think of more than one death on this island that would not have happened if these simple practices had been observed.

This is another kind of crime-prevention - and one desperately needed on this island where heavy drinking sometimes looks like a team sport.

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