3 burglary suspects arrested in Delray Beach

Posted at 10:43 AM, Jun 21, 2016
and last updated 2016-06-22 04:05:28-04

The number of car break-ins is spiking in southern Palm Beach County.

Tuesday, Delray Beach police nabbed three suspected thieves, but detectives say there are still more out there.

Police say someone living in the Crosswinds Apartment complex noticed a group of people going from car to car early Tuesday morning pulling on door handles looking for unlocked cars. That person called police who swarmed the neighborhood near Linton and Homewood Boulevards. 

Three K9s, a helicopter, and about a half dozen squad cars all went on the search for suspected car burglars.

“I looked out and there were cops there with guns and dogs,” said resident Chris Clarke.

A police dog found one suspect on Clarke's lanai.

Detectives believe a group of one 15-year-old, two 16-year-olds, and a fourth suspect who got away is responsible for two stolen vehicles and about 12 break-ins today.

One of those cars belongs to Bre Beardsley.

“I opened my console and all my stuff's gone. And my heart dropped,” she explained.

That car break-in is one of dozens this month.

In Delray, police report 65 break-ins since June 1, compared to 31 during the same time in 2015.

In Boynton Beach, the total for June 2016 is 74; up by about 30 reports from 2015.

“The end goal is to work together and take the people responsible into custody,” said Boynton Beach Police spokeswoman Stephanie Slater.

Police said it's too soon to link Tuesday's arrests to previous car break-ins around Boynton and Delray.

They're focused on keeping people like Beardsley from becoming victims. Rule number one: lock your car doors.

“Now, obviously make sure to double check every night,” said Beardsley, who admitted she’s not sure whether she locked her doors last night.

Another piece of advice is to not leave anything valuable in your car, especially not in plain sight.

In Delray Beach, 70 percent of car break-ins happen to unlocked cars.