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Deputies seek public's help to solve dozens of car break-ins

Posted at 6:21 PM, Nov 07, 2017
and last updated 2017-11-08 06:49:33-05

A string of about 30 car burglaries over the past two weeks in Golden Gate Estates has the Collier County Sheriff's Office seeking the public's help in bringing the thieves to justice.

Most of the break-ins happened in the Orange Tree community, as well as cars parked at homes along Everglades Boulevard north of Oil Well Road. Detectives say most of the vehicles were left unlocked. Stolen items include laptops, purses and GPS devices.

One of the biggest clues for detectives is video from a home surveillance camera that shows a car burglar ransacking one of the victim's cars. The video shows the unidentified person in a light colored hoodie entering an unlocked car in the victim's driveway, and using a flashlight to search the vehicle.

According to a release from the sheriff's office, detectives believe that the burglaries may be connected. The sheriff's office is currently promoting the "9 p.m. routine" - advising everyone to set an alarm every night to remind them to lock the doors to their homes and vehicles. 

That's good advice to Ken Aller.

"Always do it," said Aller, an Orange Tree resident. "I lived in Miami for 33 years. I got an education over there."

The Collier County Sheriff's Office asks that anyone whose vehicle was burglarized to report the crime, even if nothing of great value was taken - because the more information investigators have about the break-ins, the more likely it is that they'll be able to stop the people committing them.