String of garage burglaries in Clovis

CLOVIS, Calif.

Police say in the past six weeks 65 home burglaries have taken place in Clovis. Police add 28 of those homes were targeted because the garage door was open.

The burglaries are not occurring in any one specific area in Clovis. Investigators say these are instead crimes of opportunity with residents simply leaving the garage door wide open for crooks to get in and get out with their stuff in a matter of minutes.

"Once you release the back, it's heavy and it's going to fall. It takes a pretty big person to come in and do it." said Clovis resident Mike Vanhorst.

Mike Vanhorst had his $1,000 custom bike stolen Sunday. Both he and his wife are just one of the 28 victims in the past six weeks to be burglarized while leaving the garage door open.

"At the time we went and had some lunch and while we're having lunch our garage was open with the truck there and came out look around and told my wife and go we're missing a bike? Someone stole one of our bikes that quickly you know?" said Vanhorst.

The hooks which held Vanhorst's bike upside down are now a constant reminder to keep his garage door closed. Fortunately nothing else was taken including a set of tires, power tools and golf clubs.

Clovis Police say that list represents a few of the more popular items being stolen, but there's also other things being taken, particularly from cars parked inside the garage.

"Burglars have actually, they're unlocked car doors. People leave purses, wallets, gift cards that kind of thing in the car and the burglars are taking that too." said Clovis Public Information Officer Janet Stoll-Lee.

Action News went to a couple neighborhoods in Clovis and in each instance there were a number of houses with their garage doors open. Bikes, cars, and other valuables were all in plain view and left unattended. Vanhorst says he lives in a great area and some of his neighbors are law enforcement officers. But that false sense of security has given way to a strong dose of common sense.

"You don't know. You don't know if it's a garage sale effort that somebody's looking at the neighborhood or just people driving around or if it was just a quick in and out you know? But we'll definitely keep our doors shut more than we used to." said Vanhorst.

Police say no suspects have been arrested and there doesn't seem to be any one group committing these crimes.

There also haven't been reports of any of the stolen items being retrieved. Police add you should keep all your doors and side doors locked at all times even if you're inside your home.

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