Burglars prey on hot Seattle residents

SEATTLE -- Though things are looking fairly rainy for the near future, the continued orbit of the Earth around the Sun means warm weather will return before long. When it does, the Seattle Police Department would like to remind residents to close and lock their windows.

According to police, warm weather months often seen an increase in burglaries. In many of those cases, burglars enter through unlocked or just plain open windows.

For example, on May 6 (high of 87 degrees) someone entered a house in the 1100 block of 36th Avenue East and stole a computer and iPad. According to the police report for the incident, a resident left their computer room's window open all day because of the hot weather.

Even if Seattleites aren't leaving their house for long or going too far away, it's important to close their windows. On May 7 (high of 69 degrees), a man left his house in the 5300 block of 29th Avenue South for 45 minutes to visit his mother a few houses down, leaving a window open on the side of his house. When he got back, someone had cut the window's screen and taken jewelry, an Xbox and money, according to the report.

A pair of University of Washington students learned the hard way closing windows can be a good idea even if you are just leaving the room. On May 5 (high of 84 degrees), they left a window open in one room of their fraternity while going to a different room. They later discovered two laptops, an iPhone, a wallet and a backpack missing.

Even high-up or closed windows don't always offer enough protection.

In the case of the May 7 burglary in South Seattle, the window was 12 feet off the ground. A window left open May 8 (high of 67 degrees) in the 4000 block of 45th Avenue Southwest was 8 feet off the ground, but a burglar still got through it.

A resident in the 9500 block of First Avenue Northeast returned May 5 (high of 84 degrees) after a few days out of town to discover her jewelry and laptop missing. According to the report, she had left a window in her apartment closed but not locked, and the burglar was able to slide it open.

So, when the sunshine returns (hopefully soon) remember to close and lock your windows when you aren't around. And, if you insist on not turning your house into a sauna, police recommend using dowels to prevent sliding windows from opening more than 4 inches.