Thieves target homes for the Holidays - WFMJ.com News weather sports for Youngstown-Warren Ohio

Thieves target homes for the Holidays

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BOARDMAN TWP., Ohio -

Holiday crime rates spike as more people receive packages on their porch and begin to stash away those Christmas gifts inside their home. 

According to data collected in recent years by the Nationwide insurance company, there were nearly 15,000 home thefts between Thanksgiving and New Year's Day.  And according to the FBI a home is broken into nearly every 15 seconds year round with 1 in 4 home owners admitting they left their front door to their home unlocked.

Thieves are just looking for an easy target this time of year.

One man who did not want to be identified told 21 News his father's home was hit just last night.  "It was broad daylight in the afternoon. The person had a rented van and came right into the house. Didn't knock. It had to be somebody with ill intentions. The person ran out of the house as my dad approached. Thank God there was no confrontation!"

That homeowner had left his garage door open and his house door unlocked.

Police say if even if you're home, keep your doors shut and locked.  In fact, keep everything locked up or you could be a target for theft. 

"Just several days ago we had someone who started their car up to warm it and when they went it and came back out it was gone, stolen. It just took a few minutes. If you need to warm your car, have a second set of keys," said Capt. Albert Kakascik from the Boardman Police Dept.

If you're expecting a delivery of packages to your front door and you don't want them to get stolen, there is actually new technology that has a camera that senses motion and it will send you those pictures instantaneously and then you can call police.
The Ring video doorbell sells for around $100.

Other tips? Trim landscaping that hides windows  or doors.  Replace basement pane windows with glass blocks.
Use extra long screws to secure your dead bolts to the door frames so crooks can't easily kick the door in.

And always ask neighbors to keep a watch or your home and report anything suspicious.  

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