Vigilance urged following string of burglaries

Published on Wed, Jul 22, 2009 by Tara Nelson

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Security cameras at Bay Center Market caught a person of interest last March.

Law enforcement agencies are seeking a person of interest in a string of burglaries believed to be responsible for more than $50,000 in losses.

Whatcom County Sheriff’s Deputy Cliff Langley said they are interested in a person who may have broken into nearly two dozen homes in the Birch Bay area since March.

Officers are hoping residents can identify a person who was photographed shortly after a burglary in the 4800 block of Anderson Road in early March in which a thief stole six rolls of pennies.

The owner of the house said she remembered seeing a white male in a gray hoodie walking near her home in the 4800 block of Anderson road as she was leaving.Within a half-hour of the incident, a person wearing a gray sweatshirt appeared at Bay Center Market and made a purchase using six rolls of pennies.

Most of the burglaries occurred in rural areas between Blaine and Birch Bay, along Harborview Road, Drayton Harbor Road, Birch Bay Drive and Blaine and Bay roads. Most took place on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
Entries have generally been made by entering through unlocked doors or kicking the door into the residence.
The thief has targeted jewelry, money, coins and other easily concealed items. In one June incident, the thief returned to a home for the second time to steal a gun.

“All of them are day-time crimes and it would appear they are seeing people leave the house,” Langley said. “We think that means they’re driving around and when they see someone leave the house, they kick in the door and go in. They are almost exclusively looking for coins and jewelry, those are almost always emptied and the jar is left behind, but when we check for finger prints, there are none.

“Our advice is when people are leaving their house be aware if there are individuals in the area just in case we need to relate it to something later on.”

Langley said he has spoken with Blaine police officers who indicated several burglaries have taken place within the city limits and they believe those could be related.

In the meantime, residents are urged to be vigilant and report suspicious activity to the sheriff’s office by calling 911.

Anyone recognizing the person of interest in the photo should call 676-6650.