Burglary up 84 percent so far in 2012

Bonney Lake Police are warning residents about an increase in residential burglaries and offering tips on how to best protect homes from unwanted visitors.

According to Chief Dana Powers, residential burglaries are up a whooping 84 percent over the same time last year. Police department statistics show that crime in general is down by approximately 10 percent in Bonney Lake, but burglary cases have jumped to 35 in the first four months of 2012, up from 19 in the spring of 2011.

Powers said the recent rash of burglaries is most likely tied to the continuing economic struggles of the region and state.

“The longer we stay in the economic climate we’ve been in, the more and more people are affected and the burglaries go up,” Powers said.

Powers said some of the burglaries are related to a single individual with a history of breaking into homes.

“It kind of coincides with a subject we put in jail in the past,” Powers said.

Powers said the individual has recently been released from prison and police are watching for him around town.

“Our eyes are open once again to his behaviors,” Powers said.

Powers said residents should take simple steps to protect their homes by making it less inviting to a burglar. Even something as easy as trimming the bushes and weeds away from windows can be enough to discourage a would-be criminal, as it makes them easier to see from the road.

Powers recommended trimming all plants, bushes and any other potential hiding spots.

Powers also recommended posting “no trespassing” or “block watch signs.”

She reminded all residents to be sure to lock their doors, use their deadbolts and make sure to do the “little things” to make their homes less appealing to prowlers.

“Typically they look for opportunity, the path of least resistance,” Powers said of burglars.