Evening Burglary in Kerrisdale

100_0471On Thursday night at around 8:45pm theives smashed through the back door of a home in Kerrisdale. The crooks gained entry to the backyard by removing a few panels from the back fence. They likely used a crowbar or large screwdriver to pry the panels out (see the photo at the end of this post) and then used the same tool to smash through the tempered glass on the back door.

Rather than opening the door, the crooks stepped through the smashed glass and went for the master bedroom. In the master bedroom, they followed the same pattern as most of the other burglaries that we have reported… opening the bedside table drawers and then pulling everything from the closet out in search of cash, jewellery and other valuables.

Our first responder arrived 3 minutes after the alarm and startled the crooks who ran out through the back of the house and likely to a waiting car in the alley.

As a result of the very quick response, the crooks were only able to get into the one room before having to run out of the house.

Lessons to be learned?

1. The first alarm signal we received was from an interior motion detector. Had a glassbreak detector been installed near the back door, the alarm would have tripped while the crooks were still standing outside. This would have allowed our response to be even faster as well as given the crooks an opportunity to re-think the burglary given that the alarm was already sounding.

2. Five minute proofing is the single most important security consideration that you must follow in order to minimize your risk during a burglary. The best way to ensure that your valuables are not stolen is to ensure that it would take a crook more than five minutes, from the time the alarm is tripped, to find anything of real value.

3. How secure is your fence? Take a walk around your property and look for any obvious weakspots in your fencing. It may be worth having a carpenter come by to help strengthen your fence and ensure that it is not so easy for someone to remove a panel or two in order to get into your yard.

4. We are working with this homeowner to come up with a perimeter detection system in the back yard that may include both security beams as well as cameras. If done properly, a perimeter system can offer a lot of value by detecting a potential burglar as they are stepping onto your property, rather than waiting for them to actually break into your home. I will post a detailed look at the options and considerations regarding perimeter systems next week.

5. Another alternative for physical protection at the back of your home, if you have a lot of glass doors and windows, is to consider roll shutters. If installed properly, they do not need to be ugly (at least when they are up) and they provide a very strong extra level of security. Of course, in order to maximize the value of your alarm, it is important to ensure that each roll shutter is connected to your alarm. This way, the alarm will trip as soon as someone tries to pry one open. Again, I’ll post soon on the specifics you should look at when considering roll shutters.


Click on the image above to get a bigger picture that shows how the crooks removed a couple fence panels in order to gain entry to the back yard (that had locked gates).

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