South Phila. residents on edge over home break-ins

SOUTH PHILADELPHIA - November 7, 2010

Resident Diane Luccia says she hasn't slept in two weeks since someone walked down an alleyway near her home, pried open her kitchen window, and stole electronics, cash and credit cards while she and her mother slept upstairs.

"They dismantled my computer like pros, everything was neat, that was it," Luccia said, "I had to have been watched because they went in places only I know."

Luccia and others say the break-ins have occurred in and around 1100 Ritner Street.

The most recent took place Sunday morning as the thieves burglarized a young couple's home at 1120 Ritner.

"They went to breakfast. They got on the table they had on the yard, their baby is due in a week, went through their back window, came in and took her jewelry box," neighbor Antonella Cahill said.

Philadelphia police tell Action News there is a developing pattern.

Residents have reported over a half dozen burglaries over the past few weeks. Police have confirmed 4, but exact figures were not available over the weekend.

Police are stepping up patrols in the area and residents are trying to get the word out.

"We are all trying to band together as a community to try and stop this from happening; we all need to look out for each other," resident Tiziana Douglas said.

"It was never like this, 37 years I'm living here. I know the economy is bad, but come on," Luccia said.

Police say you have to lock your doors and windows. Keep exterior lights on at night and if you are burglarized do not disturb the crime scene. Investigators need it intact to preserve and gather as much evidence as possible.

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