Police: Beware of ‘knock knock’ burglaries

Echoing a problem that has plagued several local areas, the Westtown-East Goshen Regional Police Department is seeking the public’s assistance to solve a string of residential burglaries.

The department said it is working with state police from the Media barracks, who are investigating similar crimes just south of Westtown Township and Thornbury Township. Kennett Township Police have also issued an alert, and a break-in was reported recently in Pocopson Township.

Westtown-East Goshen Police believe the person committing these crimes is selecting homes that appear to be vacant, approaching the home and knocking on the door before forcing entry.

Police are asking residents to remain vigilant and to call 9-1-1 when an unexpected person makes contact with them at their home, reporting the physical description of the individual and any vehicle, said a Westtown-East Goshen press release.

Residents with video systems are being asked to check their system for suspicious activity during the afternoon of Sept. 22. Westtown-East Goshen police responded to four homes on Sept. 22 for so-called "knock knock" burglaries or suspicious activity, the release said.

The first instance occurred in the 1000 block of South New Street in Westtown Township on Sept. 22 after an alarm was activated. Police arrived at 4:23 p.m. to find the front door forced open and loose jewelry on the front step. The homeowner returned to the residence and confirmed that a jewelry box had been removed from the master bedroom, the release said.

At 4:29 p.m. on Sept. 22, police responded to the 1100 block of Westbourne Road in Westtown Township after a homeowner received a call from his alarm company, drove home to investigate, and found his front door damaged. After police completed a search of the residence, they determined that no entry was gained; the next-door neighbor arrived home at 3:49 p.m. and likely scared away the suspect, police said.

A couple of hours later, Westtown-East Goshen Regional Police responded to a home in the 300 block of Old Bailey Lane in Thornbury Township for a burglary discovered at 6:13 p.m. Police met with a family member who found the rear door of the residence forced open, the release said.

Police learned that the homeowner had received a call from their alarm company at 3:48 p.m. for a “shatter activation” that did not activate any motion sensors so the homeowner directed the alarm company not to call police. A search revealed that nothing had been taken, police said.

Finally, on Sept. 22 at 3:03 p.m., police spoke with a resident of the 800 block of East Sage Road in Westtown Township. The homeowner reported that her children were at home when a suspicious white male his 30s knocked at the front door and indicated he was there to do roofing work. The child told the individual to leave and then closed and locked the door; the child then looked outside and did not see the person or a vehicle, the release said.


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