Thursday, March 02, 2017

Recent spike in residential Break-and-Enters, Crime-prevention advice

Recent spike in residential Break-and-Enters, Crime-prevention advice

Thursday, March 2, 2017 - 3:57 PM
42 Division:  416-808-4200

The Toronto Police Service would like to make the public aware of a significant spike in recent residential Break-and-Enters (increase of 43 per cent, year to date) over the past eight weeks in 42 Division. The majority of these break-ins have occurred during daytime hours.

The suspect(s) have been targeting homes, where the fronts of the residences are either concealed or obstructed by overgrown bushes, hedges, trees or glass enclosure vestibules.

In several of these break-ins, investigation has revealed that the suspects had been acting as door-to-door solicitors or canvassing in an attempt to avoid suspicion or detection.

In some of these Break-and-Enters, residents or neighbours were home at the time of the offence, confronted the suspects and called other family members first or waited a significant amount of time before calling the police, resulting in long delays in the reporting of these entries.

The Toronto Police Service, 42 Division, would like the assistance of the public in reporting suspicious person(s) and behaviour in their neighbourhoods.

One of the most effective tools the police have for fighting and preventing crime is you. the people of our community. You know who lives and works in your area and who doesn't appear to belong or is acting suspicious.

What makes a person a suspicious person?

• Knocking on your door and asking for a random name or address
• Walking slowly along the street appearing to case out properties
• Looking into cars and walking onto personal property of others
• Door-to-door solicitors who don’t have proper identification/literature or knowledge of the product(s) or service(s) that they are supposedly soliciting.(e.g. lawn care and not being able to provide a price list or quote of services offered)
• Person(s) found on private property, in areas that are not normally accessible to members of the public. (e.g. in a backyard behind a gate/fence or secured garages)

What to do if you see a suspicious person?

• Observe the person's movements and direction of travel
• Obtain the best detailed description of the suspicious person(s)
• Do not count on others to call the police
• Report suspicious people or vehicles on your street or neighbourhood to the police at 416-808-2222
• If you are a witness of, or the victim of, a Break-and-Enter in progress, call 9-1-1 immediately.

How to increase your own personal and home security

• If a stranger comes to your door, do not let him or her in and always ask for identification
• Have monitored alarm and video security systems installed
• Keep list of serial numbers for home electronics
• Don’t keep large amounts of jewellery or money at home. Use a secured safe
• Make sure that your front door is clearly visible to pedestrian traffic. If shielded by overgrown shrubbery, cut, trim or remove any overgrown shrubbery or trees
• Lighting can be a great security measure. Consider installing lights controlled by switch timer or motion detectors
• Make certain that ladders ropes or any other tool that would make it easier for someone to gain entry into your home are locked securely away
• Remove any garbage or recycling containers from the bottom of driveways

If you see someone doing something you know is illegal, or locate an authorized person in a secure area, call the police right away. The sooner you call us, the sooner we can get to you and the better our chances of locating the person you saw.

Anyone with information is asked to contact police at 416-808-4200, Crime Stoppers anonymously at 416-222-TIPS(8477), online at, or text TOR and your message to CRIMES (274637). Download the free Crime Stoppers Mobile App on iTunes, Google Play or Blackberry App World.

Please download the Toronto Police Service Mobile App for iOS or Android.

For more news, visit

Constable Caroline de Kloet, Corporate Communications, for Detective Sergeant Gerry Heaney, 42 Division

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