PINECREST (CBSMiami) – Pinecrest Police are trying to solve a string of recent residential burglaries as homeowners try to figure out how to better secure their homes.READ MORE: Miami GP To Join F1 Calendar From 2022 In 10-Year Deal
Jennifer Nicole Lee says her home along 67th Avenue was burglarized on Sunday while she was at the museum with her sons.
“Look at that,” she says pointing to a hole where her safe was once bolted to the marble floor in her bedroom closet. “This was a 250 lb. safe that they pulled up and carried out.”
Security video from a neighbor’s camera shows two men carrying the safe to a waiting getaway car parked in the grass just outside her home’s gate, all while cars drove along the busy road.
“In the middle of the day, broad daylight,” she said. “Traffic up and down. People up and down the street, and no one even noticed.”
The crooks got away with some jewelry and the contents of the safe.
They also damaged the garage door where it appears they gained entry into the home.
“They took our sanity. Our feeling of safety on top of all that,” Lee told CBS4’s Lauren Pastrana.
Lee thinks the burglars were casing the home before making their move.
Detectives working the case stopped by her home Tuesday while pursuing a potential lead.READ MORE: Hollywood PD Investigating After Body Found In Burning Car
Lee says she feels violated and anxious, and she’s not the only one.
Earlier this month, crooks stole half a million dollars’ worth of valuables from a doctor’s home nearby.
The Pinecrest Police chief says there have been six residential burglaries in the village so far this month.
“Crime in Pinecrest is very low when you compare it to what is going on around us in the greater Miami area,” Chief Samuel Ceballos Jr. said. “But, when you talk about residential burglaries, I understand what that does to a family. So do our officers. So, one burglary is one too many.”
Chief Ceballos says there have been 62 residential burglaries this year, compared to 58 during the same time period in 2014.
He says his officers are working overtime to catch the crooks, while educating the community.
“Our officers go door to door and meet with the residents and give them crime prevention tips,” he said.
He encouraged residents to keep their valuables stored at a safe deposit box at a bank or in a spot where people wouldn’t normally think to look for them.
“I had a rude awakening. I am ‘Miss Safety Check.’ Always checking the alarm. Always checking the locks. That was not enough,” Lee said.
Police believe at least five of the recent cases are connected, but don’t think the burglary from Sunday is tied to the burglary at the doctor’s house earlier this month.MORE NEWS: FEMA-Funded Vaccine Sites To Resume Administering First Doses Of Pfizer Vaccine With J&J Shot Paused
If you have information about any of these crimes, call Miami-Dade Crime Stoppers at 305-471-TIPS.