Saanich police hunt brazen thief breaking into homes while residents sleep

At least seven incidents between Saturday and Sunday were reported, all in close proximity to one another

Saanich police believe one man is responsible for at least seven brazen break-ins or attempted break-ins to homes last weekend. Of concern to police is residents are home at the time of the forced entries, and in at least one of the incidents the suspect entered a bedroom while a couple slept and stole a phone from a bedside table.

Police were first alerted by a resident in the 3900-block of Cumberland Dr. around 2:30 a.m. Sunday (March 2) after they heard a window smashed in their home.

By the time officers arrived, the resident determined their home had been rummaged through but it didn’t appear as if anything had been taken.

“A basement door window had been broken. After the window was broken, the unknown person was able to reach into the residence itself and unlock the door,” said Sgt. Steve Eassie.

A second call came in soon after from a resident in the 1100-block of Union Rd. Someone had entered a tarped area of a garage and rummaged through items, but nothing was missing.

By late Sunday morning police had determined there were at least seven incidents that occurred overnight involving break-ins or attempted break-ins to homes, garages or sheds, all within a small area.

One break-in, in the 3900-block of Quadra St., also involved breaking a basement door window. The suspect made off with a Playstation 3 console, a laptop, an iPhone 5, a backpack with textbooks, and a bike. It was the only reported theft.

“The greatest concern is the iPhone 5 was actually situated on a beside table at the time that these two parties went to sleep. … It’s extremely likely that the suspect had located the iPhone 5 directly next to these individuals while they were sleeping. That is of grave concern to us.”

Around 4:30 a.m., prior to receiving the report of the theft, an officer in a vehicle attempted to engage a man in the 4200-block of Quadra St. He fled on foot, leaving behind a Playstation 3 and a bike.

Eassie says investigators believe all these incidents are related, as the modus operandi appears to be the same.

“All the residences that have been targeted are residences with ground floor windows and all have been focused on the backyard of these residences,” he said.

Saanich police have, in the past, seen homes entered overnight while people are sleeping, but Eassie says most break-ins, historically, are to homes where windows or doors are left unlocked or open.

“For somebody to be as brazen as this and as bold as going around breaking numerous windows to numerous homes, not knowing whether someone is home, that is highly unusual,” Eassie said. “This is not the type of activity we would expect in our neighbourhoods. It’s also very difficulty for anybody to protect themselves against (these incidents).”

Police advise homeowners to ensure doors and windows are locked at night, as well as doors to sheds, garages and outbuildings, and say residents should consider installing security devices, including motion-sensor lights or even protective film to make windows difficult to break.

The individual who fled from police is described as a white man in his mid- to late-20s with short, dark hair. He was wearing a grey hoodie at the time.

Police are asking anyone with information on any of these crimes – or if you have not yet reported a similar incident – to contact investigators at 250-475-4321.

Just Posted

Police are looking for witnesses and video footage after a crash on June 18. (Photo courtesy of West Shore RCMP)
West Shore RCMP looking for videos related to Corvette crash

Driver believed to have fled the scene of View Royal crash

Environment Canada has issued a special weather statement for Greater Victoria with unusually high temperatures expected Monday and this coming weekend. (Black Press Media file photo)
Greater Victoria’s first week of summer will be a scorcher

Special weather statement issued Monday by Environment Canada

A rendering shows what the Doral Forest Park development would look like from the southwest. (Rendering via D’AMBROSIO Architecture & Urbanism)
Beaver Lake area project passes next hurdle in Saanich

Council approval for 242-unit parks edge development hinges on meeting of conditions

Victoria police are looking for the owner of a pink and white bike they recovered in North Park. (Courtesy of VicPD)
Victoria police searching for owner of child’s bike

Officers recovered the pink and white bike in North Park

A report on food security in Sooke reveals that nearly 15 per cent of people in Sooke have trouble getting food on the table. (The Canadian Press)
Food security a growing challenge in Sooke

‘This isn’t going to get any better if we don’t do anything about it’

The border crossing into the United States is seen during the COVID-19 pandemic in Lacolle, Que. on February 12, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
VIDEO: Border quarantine to soon lift for fully vaccinated Canadians

Eligible travellers must still take multiple COVID-19 tests

Chief of Defence Staff Jonathan Vance sits in the front row during a news conference in Ottawa on June 26, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Defence committee rises without report on Vance allegations

Committee had been investigating the government’s handling of complaints against former defence chief

The Coquihalla Lakes washroom is getting upgrades. (Submitted)
Coquihalla to get upgrades to aging washrooms

The Ministry of Transportation is providing $1 million in funding to upgrade 3 rest areas

The Crofton trailer park home where the bodies of two people were found. (Photo by Don Bodger)
Mom still waiting for answers after daughter and her fiance found dead in Crofton

Pair discovered dead in their Crofton home in May identified as Rachel Gardner and Paul Jenkins

By the end of life, the average North American has eaten the weight of a family sedan in sugar. (Pixabay.com)
FITNESS: Living the sweet life without too much sugar

Simple choices can have a major impact on your health

The Sacred Hearts church on PIB land burned Monday morning. (Theresa May Jack/Facebook)
Two churches on First Nation land in South Okanagan burn to the ground

Sacred Hearts church on Penticton Indian Band land was reduced to rubble

Tl’etinqox-lead ceremony at the site of the former St. Joseph’s Mission in Williams Lake, B.C., June 18, 2021. (Angie Mindus photo - Williams Lake Tribune)
‘We are all one people’: Honouring residential school victims and survivors

Love, support and curiousity: Canadians urged to learn about residential schools and their impact

Indigenous rights and climate activists gathered outside Liberty Mutual’s office in Vancouver to pressure the insurance giant to stop covering Trans Mountain. (Photo by Andrew Larigakis)
Activists work to ensure Trans Mountain won’t get insurance

Global campaign urging insurance providers to stay away from Canadian pipeline project

Most Read