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Lawrence police are asking residents to keep their garage doors closed and locked as officers investigate a pattern of burglaries in central and northern Lawrence.
In the past five weeks, thieves have taken advantage of unlocked garages to steal more than $12,000 in tools, bicycles and other items in a series of at least eight burglaries identified by a crime analyst with the Lawrence Police Department. In all but one of those cases, the garage door was unlocked, said Sgt. Trent McKinley, a police department spokesman.
It isn't clear whether all of the thefts are related, and police have not yet identified suspects, McKinley said.
The burglaries have occurred at night and during the day, McKinley said, in several different neighborhoods, and have involved both attached and detached garages. The thieves appear to be targeting power tools and bicycles, and also are stealing items from vehicles parked inside the garages. In one case, in the 3200 block of Riverview Rd, a burglar entered a home through the garage at night and stole items from a purse on the dining room table.
The first burglary identified in the pattern was reported on May 16 in the 700 block of North Fifth Street in North Lawrence. In the weeks since then, more reports have come from the 1700 block of Louisiana Street, the 900 block of Missouri Street, and the 100 block of Tumbleweed Drive, among other locations.
Police say residents should remember to always keep their garage doors closed and locked to avoid being the victim of a crime.