The Olympia Police Department is advising residents to combat residential burglaries by looking at a survey conducted by KGW News in Portland asking convicted burglars how they got the job done.
The TV station polled 86 inmates serving time in the Oregon Department of Corrections about how they committed their crimes, and what methods actually work as deterrents.
Most burglars broke in through unlocked windows, the station reported. That method isn’t new in Olympia. In the summer 2015, the city saw a surge in burglaries as people left windows open to combat the hot weather, according to The Olympian’s archives. As Washington battled a drought, Olympia police investigated 34 residential burglaries in June 2015 — they investigated only 21 in June 2014.
According to KGW’s poll, many burglars who didn’t enter through unlocked windows instead broke down doors. And many said they prefer to break in during early morning or afternoon.
Burglars had mixed feelings about security signs, but large dogs can be deterrents. Most said they would leave if an alarm went off.
Olympia police Lt. Paul Lower said this year’s burglary trends are on par with the five-year average. The department typically sees about 280 burglaries each year.