CAMANCHE — Area residents are reminded to take extra care with their belongings as a recent rash of burglaries has hit in Camanche.

City police officials are issuing a warning to residents following seven home burglaries in the last three weeks. Assistant Police Chief Steven Runge said most of the affected residents were home at the time of the burglary.

“Almost every one of these, the people were home when it happened,” said Runge. “That’s the scary part.”

Runge warned that while most of the burglaries are taking place in the evening, it can happen at any time.

“There’s no set time, no set place. They have hit all over town,” he said.

The thefts are usually discovered when female residents return to the place they left their purse, only to find it missing. Runge said women are advised to put a purse in a place where it cannot be seen easily when looking through a window.

“Do not leave your purse in plain sight. Put it in a closet or a cupboard or something,” he remarked.

Runge said theft is generally a crime of opportunity and so far, no homes have been broken into.

“They have been entering through an unlocked window or door,” he noted.

Some of the missing purses have been recovered and Runge said cash was the only item reported missing.

Camanche resident Sandra Burken was one of those residents burglarized in recent weeks. On Sunday, Nov. 12, Burken went out to her garage and found the door standing open. When she looked into her car for her purse, it wasn’t there.

“I needed something out of it and when I looked, it was gone out of my car,” said Burken.

She assumes the burglary took place sometime during the night and remarked she didn’t hear a thing. Burken said she always locks her garage up tight, but thinks a family member may have not pulled the door completely shut. She said the thief was probably let down by what he found in her purse.

“The people are going to be really disappointed,” Burken said. “I’m not a real big purse carrier and if there was $5 in there, that would have been a lot. So they wouldn’t have gotten much from me.”

She noted the biggest hassle was figuring out what they did get away with.

“It’s stressful to think of what all I did have in there,” she said. Burken said she immediately canceled the checks and credit card in her purse and thinks she only lost things like her Jewel card and a prescription. She said the worst part of the ordeal was losing her sense of security.

“Just feeling violated, that someone came in the house,” Burken said.

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