Car burglars target Oakland Hills neighborhood, residents left on high alert

Residents in one Oakland neighborhood are on high alert after several cars were broken into in the middle of the night. The break-ins were caught on home surveillance cameras. 

The suspects didn't get away with much, but they left a trail of damage. 

Video suggests this was a coordinated crime spree.  

One camera caught a car pulling up and parking in the middle of a cul-de-sac just before 3 a.m. on Tuesday. 

The suspects casually stroll up to different cars. At one point, they focus on an Audi, and easily break the window and rummage through it, before walking back to the getaway car in no apparent rush.

"They're getting more brazen by the day," said Roger Wiersema. "It looks like they broke the window, and then crawled in through the window, opened the center console. There were only masks and napkins in there. I pulled them out." 

Wiersema has lived in the Oakland Hills since the 1980s. He said thieves never opened the car door, so the alarm didn't go off. 

He said outside of one-off car break-ins in the past, the Merriewood neighborhood hasn't been targeted like this.

Minutes after burglars left one cul-de-sac, video captured what looks like the same car and suspects at another one, pulling the same stunt. They appeared to use glass-breaking tools, and didn't set off any car alarms. 

Residents also noted that they did not attempt to break into any Teslas. 

One camera angle shows them easily opening the door to a Porsche.

Nearly a dozen residents woke up to shattered glass in their cars and on their driveways in the morning.

"It's extremely frustrating, because you would think here would be relatively safe and I just feel like the city of Oakland - is there anywhere left that is safe?" said Jane Barnes. "This happened to me six months ago and I was down on Lakeshore, and now I'm in the hills and it happens again."

Barnes reported the burglary to the non-emergency police line, and spoke to an Oakland police officer over the phone. 

"He even said we're going to log this and try, but we really don't have anything to go off of, especially when we have homicides that we have to address first," Barnes said. 

Dhananjay Nair also has to replace his glass window.

"This is not the first time something like this happened to my family. My wife was carjacked about 2 and a half years ago in Oakland. What stuck out to me across all the incidents is that these are kids," he said. 

"Is there an end in sight? Is it going to come from the city, is it going to come from police? I'm just at a loss," Barnes said. 


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