So, they tried to break in, video surveillance shows, by throwing a brick through the window.
They failed, but if someone had answered the door in the 700 block of North Swinton Avenue, the men would likely have asked if a fictional friend was home and left after the owner said they had the wrong house.
Burglars use the ploy — disguised as an honest mistake — to test potential targets, said Delray Beach Police Det. Gary Ferreri.
"It's a ruse to see if anyone is home or not," Ferreri said.
On May 17, there were at least two reports of suspicious men knocking on doors in the Delray Beach neighborhood, said Nicole Guerriero, public information officer with the Delray Police Department.
Video surveillance from the home shows the men walking to the back of the house, where they peered through the windows. They saw no one and tried to throw a brick through the glass to break in, Ferreri said.
But the brick bounced off the high-impact hurricane glass, and the men were unable to enter the home, police said.
One of the suspects, wearing sunglasses and a watch on his right wrist, crouched down in the backyard and befriended the victim's dog, petting its side and belly. The second suspect is only seen from behind, standing near the victim's covered boat, and appears to be balding.
Both men left the scene empty handed, police said.
It wasn't the first home the unknown men approached, Ferreri said. One of the victim's neighbors called Delray Beach police an hour earlier to report a suspicious man knocking on the door.
He asked to see a friend, and the homeowner told him he had the wrong house, authorities said. The caller's description of the men matched that of the men in the surveillance video, Ferreri said.
"They definitely didn't know anyone in the house," Ferreri said. "Residents have to be careful."
Delray Beach police ask anyone with information about the suspects to call Detective Gary Ferreri at 561-243-7868.
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