Burglars Target the West Valley

January 6, 2009

Los Angeles: The Los Angeles Police Department is asking for the public’s assistance in identifying a crew of burglary suspects targeting homes and condominiums in the Sherman Oaks, Encino and Tarzana areas.

The burglary suspects, dubbed by detectives as the ‘Knock- Knock Burglars’, are believed to be responsible for burglarizing more than forty homes in the West Valley area since the summer of 2008.  

This burglary crew is believed to use luxury rental vehicles to drive to their crime locations during daylight hours.  The suspects, dress fashionably, are generally men in their twenties and thirties.  They will most often knock and ring the doorbell of a home for as long as five minutes. If someone answers the door, they act like they are lost and ask for directions, then leave. If no one answers, the suspects go to the rear of the residence and break windows and then enter the home. They go straight to the bedrooms and closets and remove jewelry and expensive watches. They have been known to use pepper spray on guard dogs.

A surveillance video captured three of the suspects at one location, although detectives believe a much larger group of men may-be involved in these crimes.

Anyone with information is asked to call West Valley Detectives at 818-374-7769.  After-hours or on weekends, calls may be directed to a 24-hour, toll-free number at 1-877-LAPD-24-7 (527-3247).  Callers may also text “CRIMES” with a cell phone or log on to www.lapdonline.org and click on Web Tips.  When using a cell phone, all messages should begin with “LAPD.”  All calls and contacts are anonymous.