DEERFIELD BEACH (CBSMiami) – Broward Sheriff’s Office detectives recently uncovered a hoard of property stolen from 14 homes. If you live in Deerfield Beach, it might be yours.

Jeanne Mier, a resident of the city’s Deer Creek Neighborhood, was lucky enough to retrieve a silver set with a lengthy family history.

“1900, 1899. (It was)  passed down…so it’s very important,” said Mier. “I had this for like 25 years. I didn’t expect to see it again,” Mier added.

Detectives seized the hoard of property after arresting 44-year-old Darrin Engel, who allegedly burglarized several area homes and held the goods there.

The burglaries, which took place over the past several months, are not the first crimes on Engel’s criminal résumé.

According to detectives, Engel’s trouble began with a drug habit.  He kicked that — but then, investigators say, he lost his job…and the crime spree began so he could support his family.  “He’s got a new baby,” said BSO Detective Craig Brown. “He’s got a fiance, he lost his house…I believe in Margate over the last year or two years…and it was strictly fueled by financial things,” said Craig Brown of the Broward Sheriff’s Office.

Investigators say as far as crooks go, Engel was smart.  He watched homes to see if the people who lived there were gone.  He could tell on garbage day.

“If he saw that there were no garbage cans out in front of the house on a certain day, no one had been there and the homes were vacant, he’d come back later that day,” said Det. Brown.

Unfortunately, police know they didn’t recover all of the goods.

Of course, detectives tried. The problem: Engel had already unloaded most of it at local flea markets.

If you were burglarized recently in the Deerfield Beach area, contact BSO to see if you can identify any of your property.


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