After a this weekend, want residents to know they’re doing everything they can to solve the crimes and prevent more in the future.
Burglars broke in to homes on Devon Road and Covington Terrace over the weekend while the residents were away and stole jewelry and electronics. Police also investigated and across Moorestown late last year.
Sgt. Lee Lieber said the township, relative to some of its neighbors, has been somewhat isolated from this type of criminal activity.
“We’ve been fortunate that it hasn’t (occurred) as regularly as it has been (lately),” he said. “Still, we’d like it to be zero.”
Resident Kahra Buss, who lives in the neighborhood where the burglaries occurred this weekend, said the break-ins have her and others on edge.
“Having spoken to several of my neighbors in the last 24 hours, we’re all very concerned,” she said. “No one likes to feel insecure, especially in their own home.”
Buss believes public safety has perhaps taken a backseat to other concerns—liquor license referendums, the municipal complex project—of late, but should be the focus of more attention going forward.
Lieber said the department has taken, and is taking, steps to solve past burglaries—checking pawn shops and cash-for-gold shops, using forensic evidence, coordinating with neighboring departments—and recently solved two commercial burglaries using forensics. He said the department is also making every effort to prevent future break-ins.
The township recently hired four Class II Special Officers—part-time cops with all the training of full-timers—to focus on the downtown and curb unruly youth activity there, Lieber said. The idea is by using part-time officers to patrol the downtown area, “that full-time officers will be back in the neighborhoods to patrol the areas where we’re having the types of incidents like we had this weekend.”
According to Lieber, the department has 34 full-time officers—plus Director Harry Johnson—with about 25-plus acting as patrol officers. At any given time, including the weekends, there are at least three patrol officers (usually four or five) on duty, with a supervisor back at the station.
“I’m a township resident. Most of our officers are,” Lieber said. “And we take a personal stake in this … We take this as seriously as the residents.”
Anyone with questions or concerns is urged to contact the police department at 856-235-1405. Lieber said the department has a crime prevention officer who is available to speak to residents.
If you have any information that would assist police in their investigations, call the tip line at 856-914-3092. The police non-emergency number is 856-234-8300. And of course, in the event of an emergency, call 911.
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