Powerless homes hit by burglars in Lower Merion, Radnor

LOWER MERION TWP., Pa. - February 10, 2014

All of the burglary victims were without power for days and they were in hotels or staying with relatives when their homes were hit in the late evening or early morning last week.

Bryn Mawr resident Dilip Das showed us how thieves broke in through his sun room. They kicked in this door and ransacked his home.

"Terrible. I mean, I just can't describe how anybody would want to do that for what reason," said Das.

Police say for cash and jewelry.

Action News has confirmed, sometime between Friday evening and right into Saturday burglars made a bad situation worse in Lower Merion Township. They hit five houses that lost power. None of the families were home, as they were some place warmer.

Two of the burglaries happened on Cynwyd Road in Bala Cynwyd and three more, including Das' home, happened on North Merion Avenue, right next to Bryn Mawr College.

Das and his wife watched police sweep their home Sunday morning.

Das tells us, "We had to wait outside because they wanted to check in and make sure it was safe to go in. So all and all there's nothing pleasant, I can tell you about this."

We checked the surrounding area and Radnor Township reported three similar crimes on South Ithan Avenue, Berwind Road and Orchard Way late last week.

No power, no security systems and dark neighborhoods are perfect conditions for crooks.

Lt. Andy Block of Radnor Township Police explains, "The stars tend to align on this, so we step up our patrols on the residential streets and we also advise the people that may be residing there, if you have a neighbor on one side or the other that is fortunate enough to have a generator, to keep an extra set of eyes on their residence."

In Bala Cynwyd, Uzma Baxter, who lives right next to the two homes that were burglarized, says she saw unfamiliar shoeprints in the snow circling her home.

"It's really scary and I feel for the people and thank goodness nobody was hurt. I'm telling my kids, keep your eyes out," Baxter said.

These crimes are similar but police don't know if any are connected at this point.

Police say during an outage homeowners should try to take their valuables with them if they leave and ask to see credentials of people offering snow or debris removal.

Lower Merion Police have a message posted on their website asking residents to contact them at 610-649-1000 if a home is going to be vacant for more than 24 hours.

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