Hopewell Police respond to multiple home burglaries, car burglaries on the rise in South Brunswick

Hopewell Valley

The Hopewell Township Police Department has responded to multiple residential burglaries over the past two weeks, officials said.

On July 4, a Wyckoff Drive resident reported that while he was away on vacation, a home surveillance system alerted him that someone entered the home at about 11:30 p.m. Two unidentified men entered the home through an unlocked second floor window. Once the men realized there was a surveillance camera in the home, they left with an undetermined amount of jewelry. The men were wearing masks and gloves during this incident.

On July 9 at about 3 p.m.,  a Dublin Road resident reported that two men attempted to enter his home. The men fled the area in a small silver or gray car when confronted by the resident.

On July 16 at about noon, a Maddock Road resident returned home to find that someone had entered the house by forcing a garage door open. Later the same day, a New Road resident called police after confronting a suspicious man in her driveway. The man fled the area in a white van. The home had been burglarized. A short time later, Hopewell Township officers spotted the van on Bear Tavern Road and attempted to stop it. Officers attempted to stop the car on I-295, but were unsuccessful, and the van continued southbound into Lawrence Township. The unoccupied van was later recovered by the Lawrence Township Police Department. At about 6:30 p.m. on July 16, a Poor Farm Road resident returned home and found that a rock had been thrown through the front door and the house had been ransacked.

Anyone with information about any of the incidents is asked to contact Detective Joseph Maccaquano at 609-737-3100.

Residents should make sure they lock their doors and windows, even when they are home. Home security systems should be activated when away, even if it is only for minutes or hours. Citizens are also asked to call 9-1-1 immediately to report suspicious cars or people.

Car burglary suspect in Kendall Park

South Brunswick

South Brunswick Police are investigating an increase in car burglaries that began in early June.

Cars are mostly being entered via unlocked doors, police said. Some car windows have been smashed when valuable property is left out in the open.

At least 13 cars have been entered since June. The car burglaries occurred during overnight hours in residential areas of Kendall Park and Monmouth Junction. The suspect stole purses, change, wallets, gift cards, credit cards, laptop computers, and personal documents.

A suspect from one of the car burglaries in Kendall Park was seen on surveillance footage, and police are seeking to identify him. The car burglaries are still under investigation.

Police are calling on residents to take some basic precautions to protect their property:

Lock your car doors
While this may sound like common sense, most motor vehicle burglaries occur to unlocked vehicles. Even if your vehicle is parked in your driveway, the contents within it are still open for the taking. Simply locking the doors will deter those who might just be looking for an easy target.

Keep your vehicle tidy
Any personal items that are visible from the outside, even an empty shopping bag, could be seen as a valuable or a carrier of valuables.

Conceal all of your property
Don’t leave any bait out for thieves. Put your electronics, purses, wallets, backpacks, and accessories well out of sight. Better yet, bring them in with you.

Completely close windows and sunroof
No, it’s not just because thieves might reach in through the gap and open your locks with a coat hanger. Open windows will disable the pressure sensor in some car alarms, leaving the vehicle more vulnerable to break-in and potentially giving thieves more time before the alarm sounds.

Park for visibility
Park in a busy, well-lit area, and avoid concealment from larger vehicles, fences, or foliage. Except for the most brazen thieves, the greater the chances are that someone might see a crime in progress, the lower the chances are that the potential thief will attempt it.

If you see a suspicious person or vehicle in your neighborhood, call the South Brunswick Police Department non-emergency number (732-329-4646) to have the matter investigated further.