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Public warned to stay alert

August 21, 2008|By Mary O'Keefe

Crescenta Valley Sheriff’s detectives are warning residents to be aware of people posing as city workers or gardeners.

The warning stems from an attempted burglary that occurred at 11:28 a.m. on Aug. 13 in the 4700 block of Commonwealth Avenue. According to Det. Frank Diana, the alarm was activated at the home when two suspects attempted to enter it. They were foiled because the homeowners had installed a sophisticated alarm system that includes cameras placed throughout the property.

The surveillance camera caught the action as a silver minivan drove up to the home. The first suspect, dressed in an orange vest, got out of the vehicle and walked toward the residence.

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“He looks like he could be a city worker or a gardener,” Diana said. “Nothing to cause anyone to notice him.”

The man had a hat covering most of his face and a large neck brace on. He walked up to the front door, rang the bell and knocked several times. When there was no answer he went around to the back of the home. At this point the same silver vehicle dropped off the second suspect. This man was dressed in a white shirt and also wore a hat that covered most of his face. Both suspects kept their heads turned down away from the camera.

Another point of view showed the suspects jumping over a back fence and walking toward the home. They apparently cut a window screen and opened a back window, which set off the alarm. Meanwhile, the silver van continued to drive up and down Commonwealth.

The suspects ran away from the home and into the waiting vehicle.

Diana said that the homeowners had done everything they could to keep their property safe.

“They had an alarm and turned it on,” Diana said.

He added that the public should be aware of who is in their neighborhood. He also want residents to call the sheriff’s station at (818) 248-3464 if they see anything suspicious.

That sentiment is echoed by another La Cañada resident who recently had a frightening experience that made her realize that her city is not immune to crime.

The woman, who wished to remain anonymous, said she wanted to share her story because so many people she knows in the community continue to believe that they are immune from the influences of crime.

“We do not live in a bubble,” she said.

Her story began with a birthday gift of a very large and very brilliant diamond ring.

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