Bold burglars breaking into homes with residents inside

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SOUTH ST. LOUIS COUNTY, MO (KTVI)-- Bold burglars have been breaking into homes in the middle of the day even while residents are inside. St. Louis County Police Spokesman Randy Vaughn says the 3 to 4 suspects are running a scam before they break-in.

'They're going up to front doors and knocking. If no one answers, they're kicking in back doors and stealing. The residents, we have some answer and they've (the suspects) claimed to do yard work," he stated.

Wednesday in a South County neighborhood on Ambs Court, a woman was home and the thieves came inside. She screamed, they ran away, they didn't get anything. Minutes before police say the suspects attempted a similar crime in a nearby neighborhood.

Authorities believe the criminals struck in a neighborhood off of Weber Road last month.  They're stealing electronics and jewelry, anything they can sell quickly on the streets. Police fear the crimes could turn violent.  Vaughn said, "There is a ladder that seems to be climbed. As the comfort level for the suspects goes up, they get more brazen and become more dangerous."

Neighbors are doing what they can to keep their streets safe.  Rod Santoyo lives near one of the crime victims.

Santoyo said, "Now it`s happened, we're going to be more vigilant because we thought it was a pretty bold action. Especially when the next door neighbor had the garage door open and he was home when this took place. So we're a little surprised they were that bold. County detectives are working with police in Sunset Hills who have at least one similar case.

Police believe the suspects were driving a dark blue Ford Explorer. There's not much of a description for the would-be burglars, three to four African American males in their 20s, one light-skinned with dreadlocks.