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Burglars Targeting South & Southwest Sides of City
Posting Date: 06/20/2012

By Barbara Ellestad

The Mesquite Police Department is warning residents to take precautions to prevent their home from being the target of a burglar. Within the last 6 months there have been 31 burglary complaints reported to the police department while there were a total of 51 reported for 2011.

Jeff Smith, MPD Public Information Officer, told the Mesquite Citizen Journal on Tuesday, June 19, that the thieves seem to be targeting two retirement communities, Sunset Greens and Sun City (on the north side), in addition to other neighborhoods on the south and southwest sides of the City.

"These guys are hitting homes during the day and at night. They seem to be people you may not suspect as burglars," Smith explained.

A review of the daily Police Blotters reveals that in one day, June 15, there were four incidents reported to the police involving thefts. One was in Sunset Greens reported at 7:50 am; one was on Leavitt Lane reported at 8:42 am; one on Joshua Lane, just off Riverside Drive, reported at 2:30 pm; and one on W. Mesquite Blvd reported at 5:50 pm.

On June 11, a theft from a vehicle was reported at 10:15 am on Pinyon Lane near the Virgin Valley Elementary School, and another burglary in Sunset Greens reported at 5:30 pm.

"We are actively investigating these incidents but we're asking people to be more vigilant of their own homes," Smith added.

In recent burglaries it is believed that the burglars are working as a team, with a lookout roaming the neighborhood in vehicle for a quick “pick up” while others will check doors or any other form of easy access into the residence. These burglars are targeting prescription medication or small items that are easily carried out and easy to pawn or sell. In some cases residents were home at the time of the burglary.

Smith provided some simple basics prevention tips to help prevent a burglar from targeting your home:

  • Make your home look occupied, and make it difficult to break into.
  • Lock all outside doors and windows before you leave the house or go to bed. Even if it is for a short time, lock your doors.
  • Leave lights on when you go out. If you are going to be away for a length of time, connect some lamps to automatic timers to turn them on in the evening and off during the day.
  • Keep your garage door closed and locked.
  • Don't allow daily deliveries of mail, newspapers or flyers build up while you are away. Arrange with the Post Office to hold your mail, or arrange for a friend or neighbor to take them regularly.
  • Arrange for your lawn to be mowed if you are going away for an extended time.
  • Check your locks on doors and windows and replace them with secure devices as necessary.
  • Pushbutton locks on doorknobs are easy for burglars to open. Install deadbolt locks on all your outside doors.
  • Sliding glass doors are vulnerable. Special locks are available for better security.
  • Other windows may need better locks. Check with a locksmith or hardware store for alternatives.

Don't tempt a thief:

  • Lawn mowers, snow blowers, barbecues and bicycles are best stored out of sight.
  • Always lock your garden sheds and garages.
  • Use curtains on garage and basement windows.
  • Never leave notes on your door such as "Gone shopping."

Locks…get the best:

  • No lock, regardless of its quality, can be truly effective. Key-in dead bolt locks provide minimum security. Ask a locksmith
    for advice on your situation.
  • Change locks immediately if your keys are lost or stolen.
  • When moving into a new home, have all locks changed.

Targeting the Outside:

  • Have adequate exterior lighting. A motion-sensitive light is recommended for backyards.
  • Trim trees and shrubs so that they cannot be used as hiding places for intruders.
  • Make sure your door hinges are on the inside.


  • Most windows can be pinned for security.
  • Drill a 3/16" hole on a slight downward slant through the inside window frame and halfway into the outside frame - place a nail in the hole to secure the window or place a wooden dowel on the inside window track.


  • An alarm system is excellent for home security. It provides peace of mind to homeowners, especially while on vacation. There is a wide variety of alarm systems on the market.
  • Make several inquiries to different companies for the best security system available to you.

If Your Home Is Broken Into:
If you come home to find an unexplained open/broken window or door:

  • Do not enter - the perpetrator may still be inside.
  • Use a neighbor's phone to call police.
  • Do not touch anything or clean up until the police have inspected for evidence.
  • Write down the license plate numbers of any suspicious vehicles.
  • Note the descriptions of any suspicious persons.

Other precautions you should take:

  • Never leave keys under doormats, flowerpots, mailboxes or other "secret" hiding places -- burglars know where to look for hidden keys.
  • Keep a detailed inventory of your valuable possessions, including a description of the items, date of purchase and original value, and serial numbers, and keep a copy in a safe place away from home -- this is a good precaution in case of fires or other disasters. Make a photographic or video record of valuable objects, heirlooms and antiques. Your insurance company can provide assistance in making and keeping your inventory.
  • Keep valuables locked up to include prescription medications.
  • Trim your shrubbery around your home to reduce cover for burglars.
  • Be a good neighbor. If you notice anything suspicious in your neighborhood, call 9­1­1 immediately.
  • Mark your valuables with your driver's license number with an engraver. Marked items are harder for a burglar to dispose of and easier for police to recover.
  • Form a Neighborhood Watch Group. We can help you work with your neighbors to improve security and reduce risk of burglary.
  • Consider installing a burglar alarm system.

The MOST important thing YOU can do is CALL THE POLICE to report a CRIME or any SUSPICIOUS activity. You have to be the eyes of your neighborhood. And remember you can always remain a pair of anonymous eyes!
Also remember that just because you may live in a gated community you are not safe from burglars. Keep your doors locked even if you are home alone.

If you have any information on any burglary please contact the Investigative Services Division at 702-346-5262 Ext #6032. If you have questions about a Neighborhood Watch Program you can contact Officer Craig Empey at 702-346-5262 Ext #6118.


  • Posted Date: 06/20/2012
    Great info. I didn't even know this was going on. Thank you. I will be more aware now.
    By: Becky
  • Posted Date: 06/20/2012
    If there are that many burglaries going on in this small town, the PD isn't doing its job. That is a huge amount for this small of a town. More needs to be done.
    By: Robert
  • Posted Date: 06/20/2012
    The list says: "Lawn mowers, snow blowers, barbecues and bicycles are best stored out of sight." How many snow blowers are there in Mesquite and is theree a market for them?
    By: Justsayin2
  • Posted Date: 06/20/2012
    And the MPD is just warning us now?? Isn't that kind of like slamming the barn door after the horse is already out? Come on MPD you can do better.
    By: Kenny
  • Posted Date: 06/20/2012
    Snowblower? That's a good one. Guess Officer Smith didn't put much effort into the warning. Cut and paste. Cut and paste. Gotta go to coffee. Donuts waiting.
    By: Mary
  • Posted Date: 06/20/2012
    I think the uniform officers of MPD are doing a fine job. I see them everywhere, doing there job. The article says the police are "actively investigating" so I would say the problem is with the so-called "Investigators" not the uniformed officers. Two PD "investigators" have been there so long they can't remember how to solve a crime. Put the blame where it belongs, on lazy investigators, not on the uniform officers who are out there every minute.
    By: Vic M
  • Posted Date: 06/20/2012
    Folks, this isn't CSI Las Vegas. MPD investigators have very little real experience in solving crimes and probably do no more than read the report the street cops give them. My neighbor is an investigator and hasn't ever really solved anything. She probably never even goes to the scene of the crime or takes prints. Actively investigating means they hope a criminal will leave gigantic clues so the PD investigators can trip over them.
    By: Zack
  • Posted Date: 06/20/2012
    Be sure that the police chief will make some changes in his detective squad. Time to do the right thing. Burglaries are usually solvable. Get Sgt. Mike back on the road and he will find the sinners.
    By: ralph
  • Posted Date: 06/21/2012
    The real problem here is the sun city hoa,Sydney young! She is the most inept director I have ever dealt with on any hoa. She has known about these break ins ,yet pleads ignorance. Only when scm people complain to her does she put an alert out. Her defense is "I do not want to alarm people" OK And the quality of contractors has declined since I moved here 5 yrs ago-in a quest to save money pulte has fired all there in- house builders and subs and hired a far degenerative construction crew and subs. SOMEONE FORGOT TO FIRE SYDNEY YOUNG!
    By: Scm enforcer
  • Posted Date: 06/22/2012
    @ SCM enforcer...exactly how many break ins have there been? Funny how there were no probes there until they started having those community yard sales and everyone was trolling the neighborhoods....same could be said for Sunset Greens. Maybe the city needs to rethink these sales as it is a good way to display what is inside the homes!
    By: J
  • Posted Date: 06/22/2012
    There have been several brak -ins,about 5-7that I have heard about. Call Sydney young at the sun city mesquite rec center and ask and then go check the police records,I am sure there is a difference in figures. The hoa has hush hushed it. And the garage sale makes no difference,all have occurred before and after . Sydney young and Quincy Edwards have hushed this up to keep sales going. Call them and ask them,and then scrape the b.s. off your shoes. I guess you could call it creative mis- representations
    By: Scm enforcer
  • Posted Date: 06/23/2012
    Yes, I live in Sun City also and we have been broken into. The break ins have NOTHING to do with the community garage sales held here, we are not stupid enough to let people into our homes! I suffered a break in and the police came right away. The police did everything correct. Sydney Young, however did nothing. She did not respond to my phone call, the information released to the paper was incorrect and she did not return my call then either. When close friends of ours who knew of our break in questioned her she played it off that we just left the door open. After that we found our there had been other break ins at Sun City prior to ours. Sydney put sales over our safety. I have always found her to be rude and brash but this is too much!
  • Posted Date: 06/24/2012
    My parentsI too live in sun city mesquite and had there home broken into. All of sun city knew about it before Sydney young and the hoa and then when my parents told her she was condensending,rude and did not believe them. She said she had to check with the police dept.and after she did confirm it was still rude,and real defenceive and cocky. There since then have been several breaking,and the hoa and Sydney are always behind the curve,sometimes putting an alert out 2or more days later. Sydney young,Quincy Edwards,and the scm hoa leave a lot to be desired.worst hoa my parents and other residents I have talked to have seen or experienced. There comeback is they do not want to alarm people,but it is really to keep sales going. There have been as many as 10 breaking in the last 6 months,of course Sydney will not give you the figures. Go check with the police dept,they will give you the figures. And Quincy Edwards who is head of the hoa and just a puppet for pulte will try to bully and demean you if you approach him about the breakins.just a pulte puppet. Sydney young needs to work for the residents and keep there interests in mind. Talk to her some time,cocky,condense ding and rude. But I guess that is the pulte way.
    By: Scmhoavictem
  • Posted Date: 06/24/2012
    I live in scm and have heard about the break-ins. Unfortuanetly,I remember only receiving 2 alerts from the hoa. It seems the hoa is covering this up -sad! And yes,if Sydney Young does not like you she can be very rude and unwilling to help you.she is also very opionated? It has gotten worse with her over the 4 yrs I have lived here.maybe she should just retire. But we as homeowners should be alerted about break-ins and other events in scm. We deserve that as homeowners and with the dues we pay. And the hoa and sydney young have certainly fell far short on that note.
    By: Concernedscmdude
  • Posted Date: 06/24/2012
    I concur with all of the scm hoa comments. Sydney young is rude and crabby. Worse is Quincy Edwards ,head of the hoa,whom is just a Pulte hatchet an. He is rude,and when you complain about something hoa related his standard answer is that dues will go up if that is what you want. Complain about alerts,dues will go up. Complain about weeds,dues will go up. Complain about anything,dues will go up. Why don't they fire Quincey Edwards,Sydney young,hire younger people who care and maybe dues will go down. These 2 are the biggest joke of hoa representation ever observed. I am sorry I moved here,with there selective hoa enforcement and standard canned bs answers and total disregard for the residents
    By: Scm senior
  • Posted Date: 06/25/2012
    Omg..ILIVEHERETOO....I am also a SCM resident and quite honestly, after reading your rants, I know why I never admit I live in SCM. Funny, no one really drove through our streets prior to those community yard sales..nice exposure for our hoes! So please don't say the yard sales had nothing to do with the break ins. Potential burglars got to see potential victims, some of their goods outside for sale, and perhaps they even spoke directly to you at the garage sale...they didn't need to go inside your home. The robberies may affect sales some, but honestly, those neighborhood watch signs would creep me out more. I lived in a large urban city and never saw anything like those signs. I would be curious to know exactly what types of items are being stolen as the hoa letter has stated it is basically prescription drugs.
    By: J
  • Posted Date: 06/26/2012
    Dear ilivetheretoo, I am also a SCM resident and I totally disagree with you. Both SCM and sunset greens have tremendous community garage sales. To say these break ins have nothing to do with it is naive. The people whose homes have been broken into may have even met the offenders in their front yard. We have heard it was prescription drugs...has anything more valuable been taken? Your snippy emails indicate your personalities. I NEVER admit to anyone I live in SCM because these emails indicate the type of attitude the entire town sees from many SCM residents...spolied old people!
    By: J
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