More suspects accused of kicking in doors to burglarize homes
Last month, Action News first reported on a group of thieves kicking in doors to steal from residences of local neighborhoods.Photo: Video by ktnv.com
Las Vegas, NV (KTNV) -- Last month, Action News first reported on a group of thieves kicking in doors to steal from residences of local neighborhoods.
Now, four more arrests have been made and police are learning more about the brazen criminal operation.
The thieves would knock to see if anyone was home. If no one answered, they'd kick in a door. They got away with thousands of dollars, as well as expensive electronics and other valuables.
Investigators say residents of local apartment complexes typically don't realize these thieves are watching their every move.
"They will scope the individual's location and watch for people going to work, watch for people briefly leaving their home," said Metro Detective Angela McClelland. "These individuals really do scope out the areas they burglarize."
Earlier this year, Action News was first to tell you that police caught 10 adults and more than a dozen suspects under the age of 18 for at least 30 kick-in burglaries.
Detectives believe the adults who run the operations are recruiting kids and teens and sending them in to do the stealing, because they look more innocent.
Those suspects were caught after selling stolen items at pawn shops. Metro said after that story first aired, more witnesses and victims of the crimes came forward. That helped police catch two more suspects, Saheed Kirkling and Stevie Ratliff, along with two juveniles.
Investigators also discovered more about the illegal operation. To prevent getting caught at pawn shops, Metro said the suspects have resorted to renting rooms at motels on Boulder Highway.
"They will lease these rooms on a daily basis...the reason being to store their stolen property," said Detective McClelland. "That way the property will never be located."
After that, the suspects sell that stolen property on the streets themselves or recruit others to sell it.
Police say the real danger is that in some cases, guns were stolen. That means these burglars can then be armed, or sell those weapons to others they come in contact with.