COLUMBIA, IL (KTVI)-Police are calling for help this morning, an "after-Christmas" crime outbreak grips their town. Columbia, Illinois has seen twenty-one car break-ins and counting. Most of the thefts are taking place at or near people's homes.
Police in Columbia say the thief or thieves have stayed to the side streets, hitting three different subdivisions. They started out just going into people's cars, but they've gotten bolder. They entered one garage that was left open the day after Christmas. And Friday night, as six more cars were hit they also broke into a home where the residents were sleeping.
Capt. Jerry Paul says, “The residence that was burglarized, the family was home at the time. And it really concerns us that these folks are this bold, like coming in and removing items from the house, you know, while the folks are there in the house."
Police are asking residents to lock their cars and homes and to make sure they keep their garage doors closed.
If anyone knows about these crimes or saw suspicious activity over the last few days, call Columbia Police at 618-281-5151.