I just read an article in the Dealer section of SIW, titled "NC Burglar Shares Tips on How He Preyed on Homes." The article, written by Michelle Crouch of The Charlotte Observer, tells about Anthony Ferguson, the criminal who broke into 600+ homes in Charlotte, North Carolina from the mid-1980's until 1999 when he was caught. In the article, some of Ferguson's secrets are disclosed; probably the most noteworthy of which is when he says, "I basically don't hit houses that ain't got alarms."
What? Yes, that's what he said. Here's the passage I found most interesting in the article:
For Ferguson at least, alarm systems weren't a deterrent. In fact, he specifically looked for homes that had them. For one thing, he said, they were turned off more than half the time. He usually could check out the system because of what he describes as a chronic security company mistake: "They put the alarm box where I can look in the window and see it."
Another mistake, according to Ferguson: Most two-story homes have no alarms on the second floor -- where many master bedrooms and most jewelry boxes can be found.
"If you don't have an alarm on a second-floor window," Ferguson said, "and there's a tree or ladder or anything, I'll crawl up and go through the second-floor window and never, ever set the alarm off because I don't even have to go downstairs."
When all else failed, he could avoid the system by taking apart a window rather than opening it. Once inside, he was careful to avoid motion detectors.
"If I do go in your house and you got an alarm system, I never step in a hallway and I never step in a doorway and I check for sensors," he said. "To get from room to room, I kick holes in the Sheetrock."
If the alarm went off, however, Ferguson always fled. Often, he said, the police would pass him walking down the street, his pockets stuffed with jewelry, as they sped to the home.
"They would just ride right by. I would jump on the city bus and go back across town."
Unbelievable! You can read the whole thing here.