By Mason W. Canales
Killeen Daily Herald
Killeen residents were victims to 2,319 reported burglaries in 2007, according to information from the Killeen Police Department. This year, residents have seen about 584 from January through April.
The large number of burglaries led to the creation of a specialized unit within the Killeen Police Department to handle the problem.
The Burglary Unit, started in November, is dedicated not only to solving burglary cases but also taking a proactive approach to preventing future ones, said Sgt. Pat Turck, Killeen Police Officer.
“It is something that we have really focused on this year compared to years in the past,” Turck said.
There is a significantly lower number of reported burglaries in Killeen from January through May this year compared to the same time last year.
“They are down by about 30 percent,” Turck said.
The growing relationship between the community and patrol, as well as the dedicated unit, are plausible reasons for the decline, Turck said.
It is the unit’s goal to make as many arrests as possible for those responsible for burglaries, Turck said.
Typically when one arrest is made for a burglary charge, it will clear several incidents. However, sometimes those incidents are known to the police and sometimes they are not.
KPD receives a number of reports for burglaries where there is a lack of evidence or information for police to track. There are burglary cases that have no witnesses, no suspect information and no way to identify the stolen items, Turck said.
When the serial numbers of stolen items are not provided to the police, it is harder for them to track the stolen goods, Turck said.
“That is where the victims can make a huge difference in the prosecution, by providing serial numbers of items that were stolen,” Turck said.
Contact Mason W. Canales at firstname.lastname@example.org or (254) 501-7554.
The following are some burglary arrests made by KPD since Jan. 1, 2008:
Date of incident: Jan. 7
Date of arrest: Jan. 7
Location of incident: 2600 block of Boswell Drive
How the arrest was made: Witnesses called and reported a suspicious vehicle in a neighbor’s drive. They said they saw two people exit a home and enter the vehicle. Police attempted to stop the vehicle, but it fled the scene. The chase ended in a foot pursuit and two suspects were apprehended.
Date of incident: Jan. 14
Date of arrest: Jan. 14
Location of incident: 2100 W.S. Young Drive, Sears
How the arrest was made: Police responded to an alarm in the store. Upon checking all the doors of the store, an officer saw two men pass by a window and then break a door with a fire extinguisher. It was a short chase involving a police K-9 before two teens were arrested.
Date of incident: Feb. 7
Date of arrest: Feb. 8
Location of incident: 2000 block of Cimmaron Drive.
How the arrest was made: Person came home and found several items missing from his home. A neighbor told him two people down the street were selling items that matched the owner’s description. Police investigated and determined the two men were responsible for the Cimmaron burglary.
Individuals arrested: Michael Paul Dominick, Treavor Scott Whitfield
Date of incident: Jan. 20
Date of arrest: April 15
Location of incident: 500 block of Harris Street
How the arrest was made: Neighbor was watching the home when items went missing. KDP conducted an investigation of the burglary, located and returned the stolen items to the owner. They arrested the suspected individual.
Individual arrested: Paul David Reed
Date of incident: May 1
Date of arrest: May 1
Location of incident: 1000 block of Parmer Lane
How the arrest was made: A resident returned home to find items missing. The officer received possible-suspect information from the resident and the officer located a chair outside a window of the home with a shoe print on it. Later that night, police arrested a suspect. The stolen items were returned to the owner.
Individual arrested: Rayshawn Cook