Safety alert issued for S. Fla community

Surge in home burglaries raises concerns

COCONUT GROVE, Fla. – There's a safety alert being issued for people who live in or near Coconut Grove and the Roads after a surge in home burglaries. And now, residents are asking police for more help.

"They've probably been scoping the houses for a couple of weeks and that's probably why they hit that house."

Two homes, two blocks apart were cleared out in minutes.

Police say the burglars had probably been scoping the houses for a couple of weeks. They say it's the work of two men who pair up to target homes in the Roads neighborhood of Miami.
The first break-in happened at noon on Monday when nobody was home. The crooks then crossed Southwest 7th Avenue and 26th Street where they broke through a backyard sliding glass door.

But they didn't know that someone across the street was watching.

"I crossed the street when I saw the car," said Elvira Canet. "I thought maybe it's my grandson. I knocked on the window and when he rolled down the window, I said 'It's not my grandson' and I said 'What happened here?'"

The rash of break-ins hasn't gone unnoticed.

Police have increased their presence in the area and notices have gone out, warning people to be extra vigilant.

"They're targeting the people where they don't see any cars or they see its easy to get in the backyard," said Oscar Sugranes. "Our house has big hedges. We like to keep private, so we know that nothing is going on."

For the second time in as many weeks, the issue of increased crime across the city was brought up by residents at city hall.

The group is looking for a promise from leaders to come up with $10 million to hire 100 new officers.