Police believe teens to blame for string of burglaries

By: Megan Palera

They're the “Backpack Thieves,” and they hit during the afternoon hours. It's why police say now more than ever people need to lock up during the night and day.

Jan Sigler has lived at her house in Northeast Lincoln for 35 years. This is the first year she's made sure her house is secure all the time.

“Locking everything and making sure all of our doors were locked and windows locked and carrying our keys when we go to visit each other,” said Sigler. That's because in the last six weeks, police have responded to more than thirty home burglaries.

The burglaries all took place between 48th and 56th Streets, from Vine to Adams. Just this week, police arrested some “Backpack Thieves.” Two, 14-year-old boys breaking into empty homes and stashing small items in their backpacks.

“If you are home and you see someone suspicious in your neighborhood, they might not come to your house. THey might not ring your doorbell, but if things don't look right to you, that's the time to pick up the phone and call police,” said Captain Jim Davidsaver with LPD.

Police don't want people to be extremely paranoid, just take precautions. But it's easier said than done for a 62-year-old and her neighbors who live on a street they nicknamed “Widow Alley.” “We have a divorcee and the rest of us are all widows so it's an easy mark I would assume for a burglar. Nobody is taking it as a joke,” she said.

Again, the Backpack Thieves are just the most recent case. Police say they've also dealt with a string of overnight burglaries in that area so just make sure to lock up and be alert.