Neighbors on high alert amid theft suspect search

NOW: Neighbors on high alert amid theft suspect search

OSCEOLA, Ind. -- Right now-- the power of Facebook uniting a community---trying to catch a crook caught on camera attempting to break into a home in Osceola.

And it's not the only break-in people in that neighborhood are dealing with.

The Newbury Pointe neighborhood is just one of the areas that was hit by someone trying to break into homes and cars early Monday morning.

And one neighbor was shocked when he checked his surveillance video Monday morning.

It was just another Monday morning to Corey Vermillion, who had woken up around 7:00 a.m. and went to check his phone.

Corey Vermillion, a resident in Newbury point for almost a year now says, "I saw I had a notification from ring. So, I open ring and play the video and I’m looking to see some little woodland critter and then out of the right-hand corner I see the creepiest thing I have seen.”

Vermillion saw the ring video which shows a hooded figure—"creeping up along the side of the garage checking the door handle to see if the garage is unlocked.”

Which did not sit well with Vermillion.

Vermillion says, "My heart stopped I will say is number one.”

He immediately called the Osceola Police Department who sent out an officer.

Vermillion remembers the officer who said, "Yeah I was just out here two other times for vehicle break ins.”

Which did not include a car break in just a minute down Vistula Road off of Rivercrest Drive—where Amanda Cozzi dealt with the same issue!

Amanda Cozzi has lived off of Rivercrest for over a year now and recalls, "Monday morning woke up went to work, started cars, noticed car would not start. Noticed trunk was left open. And footprints leading up too said trunk and car ransacked.”

Cozzi says thankfully only petty things were taken, "sunglasses, music player, change just that petty stuff.”

But that is incomparable to the invasion of privacy she and her family are feeling.

Cozzi says "It was scary. In that neighborhood you don’t expect it.”

And Barb Wenger, whose own parents also grew up in this neighborhood says she’s saddened that 4 families had to call the police in one night, "It’s sad. It makes you feel not safe in your own home. And you wonder if you're next.”

With reports filed, and video showing someone lurking around—neighbors are hoping these people just stop.

Wenger says, "I don’t know why people feel they have the right to go through other people’s property.”

Vermillion agreed saying, "If you're struggling there are programs to help you out. You don’t need to steal from people even though you may feel you need to.”

And are taking some defensive measures of their own.

Cozzi said she had talked with her husband and says, "Were definitely talking about more security cameras good resolution cameras, locking cars, not keeping things in cars nothing valuable in cars and being more alert.”

Captain Mary Potter of the Saint Joseph County Police Department had a few tips for homeowners trying to be proactive.

  • Make sure to lock your cars and doors especially if leaving for long periods of time.
  • Always closing your garage doors--whether you are in or out of the home.
  • And do not leave any valuables in your car. She specifically mentioned the extra key fobs that can start your car, because someone could just drive off with your car.

Otherwise just be diligent and smart and hopefully issues should not arise for you and your families.

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