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Thieves target 55+ community in North Fort Myers

Posted at 6:18 PM, Jun 07, 2017
and last updated 2017-06-07 18:18:24-04

Deputies are searching for thieves behind several burglaries at Horizon Village in North Fort Myers. Detectives with the Lee County Sheriff's Office say crooks broke into nearly half a dozen cars off Littleton Road and North Cleveland Avenue.

People living in Horizon Village say the park-wide hit happened on Tuesday during late hours of the night.

Sharon O'brien was the first person to find out she was one of several people hit by brazen burglars.

"This is such a great community. I'm shocked," she said. "I just sat in there [living room] all night last night just waiting to see if they would come back.”

O'brien says she heard thieves take off with her car, but fear paralyzed her. She says she was afraid to move because she didn't know what the culprits were capable of.

“I was wide awake, the TV was on, the lights were on and they still managed to steal my car.”

It didn't take deputies long to find her car near a dumpster lot just feet away.  Larry and Shoshona Matthews were also hit. Thieves got away with binoculars, sunglasses, a few tools, and pocket change.

"My first thought was my wife must have been searching for something," Larry Matthews said.

While thieves didn't get away with much, the Matthews tell Four In Your Corner, there will be serious consequences and jail time.

"It's considered a home burglary because the car port is attached to the house. They're [thieves are] looking at felony charges and major jail time,” Shoshona Matthews said.

As detectives work to pin down any prospects, neighbors are doing everything they can to deter crime from striking again.

“They still have my keys, they might come back," Sharon O'brien said. "But I also think they need to be taught a lesson. Crime doesn’t pay.”

Homeowners tell Four In Your Corner they will be installing motion sensors, security cameras, and alarms to deter thieves from striking again. Anyone with information about these crimes is asked to call the Lee County Sheriff's Office (239) 477-1000 or Southwest Florida Crimestoppers at 1-800-780-TIPS