JENSEN BEACH, Fla. — The busy winter season is still weeks away, but a man says he found his family’s home vandalized days before his elderly mother was set to arrive back in Florida from the northeast.
Vance Creighton and his family have called the Nettles Island community in Jensen Beach their second home for decades. With waterfront views, it’s a little piece of paradise.
“This is a violation. How do you feel safe again?” said Creighton, now disturbed over what happened.
Creighton said he found the house broken into this week, and the thieves made themselves quite comfortable.
“They had used the toilets and they were full because the water is off because the house was closed,” he said.
Creighton says a row of his mom’s antique books were taken, thousands of dollars worth of fishing poles were also gone, food was in the trash and soda cans were left empty.
“They sprayed inside the refrigerator doors and closed it, and when I opened it up I found nasty mold,” he said.
Creighton believes the thieves broke in through the back sliding door after possibly driving down the canal in a boat.
“I was amazed that would happen, especially because it sounds like it was during the day,” said Bob Frechette, who lives around the corner.
The St Lucie County Sheriff’s Office is now investigating and believes this is an isolated incident.
“I think everybody is more on the alert that you have to watch out and watch out for your neighbors,” Frechette said.
The sheriff’s office says if you have a family member or friend heading back for the season, it’s best to arrive during the day to easily see if something is out of place, and if so, don’t touch anything so investigators can try and get fingerprints. Also, ask a neighbor to look after your property when you’re away.