ODESSA, Fla. - A man and woman did their best to blend into an Odessa neighborhood by passing themselves off as taking a stroll with their dog. They were actually trying to break into a home in the Wyndham Lakes development.
The homeowner was not there; but his security cameras captured the suspected would-be burglars in the act.
"It was just shocking," said Jin Chang, who lives in Odessa.
Chang couldn't believe what he was seeing when he searched his house security footage after he returned home from an evening trip with his family.
The footage shows a couple walking a dog on sidewalk near his home.
"Nobody would ever guess that they were here to rob someone. They actually came to the front of the house around the corner, with a dog, acting like they were actually walking the dog in the neighborhood," Chang said.
But the couple with the medium sized dog had other plans in mind. The woman goes up the driveway and rings the doorbell while she tries to keep the dog restrained.
"All I see is that dog. I mean, I'd be horrified if my family was home," said Chang as he watched the footage again.
Finding nobody home, the woman leaves, but her partner is just getting started. He tries three windows, finds them all locked and then goes through the back wooden fence gate and gets into the screened in porch.
"He actually used his hands to cut it open," Chang showed.
The would-be burglar heads straight to the sliding glass door; finding it locked, he pauses for a glance into the camera. Then he gives up and walks out; and, eventually, a second failed attempt to get in the side windows.
"I'm concerned for my family and everyone else out there who could be affected by these people," Chang explained.
The fact that the couple used the dog to blend into the Wyndham Lakes neighborhood speaks to the length crooks will go to to accomplish their crimes.
"Many reasons why a neighbor may be knocking on your door, and you may open thinking this is just a neighbor walking their dog. So this was a little creative in how they did it. This wasn't just ambushing a home and trying to see if anything was unlocked," said Crystal Bermudez-Nunez of the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office.
If you have any information regarding the attempted break-in, you're asked to contact the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office at (813) 247-8200. Or, call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-873-TIPS (8477).