Crap! We've been robbed!`

I get home with Baby Kate tonight about 6PM. The landscaping guy is there, working with the rototiller, clearing some brush. Simple enough, right?

I get up to the house, the door is open. Hmm.

I look inside, the cabinets in the entryway are open. They weren’t like that when we left this morning. I call out to John (the landscaper) “Hey! Did you go inside?” “No”, he says.

I get inside the house, let the dogs out of their kennels and walk them out through the office so they can get to the backyard.

“Hey! My monitor is on the chair! What’s up with that?”

My monitor, normally in its alcove on my desk, is on my office chair, the keyboard is on the floor. It looks like someone tried to get it loose by grabbing the monitor and YANKING it off the desk. Given that it’s connected to the box and the wall by all those cables it resists being moved.


I drop Baby Kate on the landscaper (to their mutual dismay) and check out the rest…

Lady Chance’s computer? Also yanked around.

Guitars? Still there.

Television’s gone!

DVD players gone!

Lady Chance’s jewelry box is on the bed! Opened! I don’t touch it.

Since I’m shaky, I take Kate and John calls the sheriff. I call the insurance company. They’ll have an adjuster call me in the morning at work.

Cop shows up. We tour the place. No signs of forcible entry. Cop speculates that I forgot to lock the door this morning. He could be right. We leave in a rush every morning.

We go over everything. They took the TV, they took the DVD player but NOT all the DVDs stacked on it (though I’m afraid Disk 7 of the ST:TNG box set was in the player.). They move the jewelry box, open it, rifle through it and TAKE NONE OF IT. Must have been about 3 grand worth of gold and gems in there. They didn’t even bother to open the boxes. Just rifled the costume jewelry.

Spare room: Guitars (about 2 grand). Stereo equipment: 1 grand. Speakers: almost irreplacable.

Antique clock: Still chiming.

Change jar: Full, still there.

3 entirely unconnected computers in the office? Still there.

So we have some thieves that break in (somehow) and manage to see valuable items and only take the least valuable of them..


They missed obvious things they could have just placed under their arms and walked off with. My sword, a boom box, two digital cameras (one old, one new), portable CD player.

The cop speculates that it’s local kids. Opportunists. He checks for fingerprints but comes up with nothing definitive. I expected that. He takes some small items that were moved for further examination.

I am SO cheesed off about this you couldn’t believe.

And a part of me wonders at how dumb they were. It’s just astonishing.

But Lady Chance is having me set up a home security system now. That should be loads of fun.

Wow, I’m so sorry this happened to you!

I’m glad nothing too expensive or irreplaceable was taken, but that sucks so much.

What size “system” are you getting 9mm or .357? :wink:

Geez, what else is there to say, that totally sucks! I want to get a home security system as soon as we can afford it.

Ummm…Jonathan, I’m sure Dopers are all wonderful people, but on the off chance that someone not so nice finds out your IRL address are you sure you want to be giving that someone a room by room short course in how to case the Chance household goodies?

It’s not like half of them don’t already know the address. Come to the party, MD-boy!

Even before the cops said “kids” I would have offered the same. My best for you getting over the feeling of intrusion.

Does this mean that I should take extra precautions when I arrive there in my classic 1985 Mercury Grand Marquise? Just because it has 120,000 miles and a little rust doesn’t mean that it might not be a target of smart thieves. LIke the ones who burgled your castle.

My mother’s place was burgled when she was away for a few days (she asked neighbors to keep an eye on the place, but they can’t watch it 24/7).

She comes back and finds a rear door window broken. Inside, the TV and VCR are missing. (They were oldish models, and insurance pays for the latest hi-tech models, so she’s happy.)

What did the morons who burgled her ignore? Antique books - some of them over 300 years old - and worth a heck of a lot more than a ripped-off TV.

Be thankful that criminals are illiterate retards.

Man, that’s terrible. I’m glad you are all OK and the damage is relatively minor.

That sucks man. It’s happened to me before, and the only way to describe how I felt was violated. The thought of strangers playing with my stuff really bothered me.

They got one of the guys that did it (his accomplice, who went by the street name “Fleabag”, got away). The kid ended up on accelerated rehabilitation. It was his first offense, he stayed clean for a year and his break-in of my place came off the books.

The part that made me the maddest was getting my stuff back. They made off with my VCR & stereo receiver in a duffle bag (which they threw when they were caught). I had to wait until the case cleared before I was allowed to have the scratched/damaged evidence back. It tool almost a year.

Like I said, I’m just amazed at the stupidity of these guys. They could have done so much better and they just ignored real stuff.

I’m simply amazed that they went to the trouble of opening the jewelry box, taking the stuff out, NOT looking in the ring and necklace boxes, and leaving it all.

Moron kids.

Oh, and on the subject of books, they opened a display cabinet I have. It’s filled with completely irreplacable diaries and documents, some of them dating back to before the Revolutionary War.

They didn’t even disturb them, of course.

Sorry about the break-in, but congratulations on getting off so easy. It could have been a whole lot worse.

I have to ask, though…why is everyone surprised that your average burglar doesn’t steal rare books? Yes, they’re valuable, but they’re a lot harder to sell, so they’re not as valuable to the dimwits doing the breaking-and-entering.

I know how you feel! A couple of years ago two teenagers with a back pack broke in through the back bedroom window at 11:00 in the morning!
One teenager stood at one end of the street with a walkie talkie communicating with the guys that broke in presumably (my neighbor across the street saw the whole thing)They took my entire jewelry box (wedding ring, first love ring junk jewelry etc.) They left behind an expensive video camera, CDs,VCR,guns expensive hunting equipment.They also ransacked the place! Absolute douchebags!

Hopefully it was just stupid kids, but you never know. I got hit back in '90, cleaned me out. Guns, jewelry, stereos, the works. Most of all, my deceased Grandmothers H.S. graduation ring, which was irreplaceable, and probably worth 0 on the market. 6 months later, after the insurance paid off, they hit again. I don’t mean to make you paranoid, but better safe than sorry. I bought a huge safe, and I hate that I had to, but that’s the way it is nowadays. I don’t believe in alarm systems, since the seasoned burglar pretty much knows he’s got at least 15 minutes to snatch and grab after the alarm goes off, what with the high incidence of false alarms these days. Even though the material things, most of 'em, can be replaced, your biggest loss, you’ll soon realize, is your sense of security. After you’ve been violated this way, things are never quite the same.

Curiously, I really don’t feel that lose of security. I’m gonna have to examine that in my head.

I’m sorry that happened, and I’m glad you got the cretin crooks, rather than the crafty crooks.

Don’t try to examine your head. More power to you for not worrying about the loss of security. It sounds like you are taking precautions now to avoid having it happen again. Just be careful.

Re: what the crooks took. Books and papers are extremely heavy. They are not the type of thing you want to be lugging around unless you Know they are valuable. I sure wouldn’t know the difference between an expensive diary of Colonel so-and-so from the revolutionary war, and your great-great-great-granpappy’s journal, which might mean a lot to you, but couldn’t pay for my next crack hit.

Sounds like these guys were chumps, so hopefully an alarm system would scare them off. That, or maybe you could give your dogs a taste for stupid crooks.

(And here I was wondering why the Dip hadn’t been adjudicated yet. If you need me, I’ll be over here stewing in my self-absorption.)

So sorry that this happened to you. And in time things will be back to normal. Just be thankful that no one was actually hurt with the teens stupidity. Sorry again - and hope this NEVER happens to you again.

There is no more direct violation of your rights than this. God go with you in your quest for justice.

I’m pretty doubtful there’s going to be any justice here.

One amusing thought that occured to me. We have baby gates over the top and bottom of the stairs. The theives had to go over them (they weren’t disturbed) to get the television downstairs. That damn TV is heavy.

One small alternate universe away I came home to two thieves broken and bleeding at the bottom of my stairs with a TV maching them into jelly.

Heh heh heh.