WATCH: Lafayette School Board Member Catches Burglars On Camera
"If you love it, lock it."
We've seen that phrase on signs and in public service announcements reminding people to lock their cars and home doors. It's been at the top of a lot of people's minds lately because of a rash of burglaries across Acadiana. Still, burglars are going around looking to steal whatever they can.
One of the latest cases hit an elected official close to home.
Lafayette Parish School Board member Tehmi Chassion says a few young burglars recently targeted his neighborhood. Chassion, who lives on Lafayette's Northside near J. W. Faulk Elementary School, says the burglars, who appear to be teenagers, hit several homes and discarded any unwanted ill-gotten gains while walking through the neighborhood.
"It’s so strange to watch the 2 young kids/men that STOLE from 7 different people early Monday morning (2:20am) behind J.W. Faulk be so casual about it as if they are doing nothing WRONG!" Chassion wrote in a Facebook post. "They can’t be no more than 14-16 years old. Stopping at different ditches to throw unwanted stolen goods and now empty wallets in the pipes. We are getting a better idea of who you are though."
One of the reasons why Chassion and his neighbors are learning who the thieves are is because of surveillance video. Cameras installed outside Chassion's home caught the suspects in action. Chassion uploaded the security video to his Facebook page.
In one of the videos, you can see one of the suspects trying to open the rear door of a car, which is apparently locked.
In the other, you can see the two suspects walking in front of a home and dumping some of the stolen items in a ditch.
Based on some of the comments on Chassion's post, different neighborhoods in town have been hit by burglars, some of whose methods are more advanced than others.
"This happened in our neighborhood," Brittany Guy wrote. "[T]hey blocked the wifi signal so our cameras couldn’t catch them but they stole 3 iPads (and) threw my husbands bag in the ditch."It’s so crazy! If these are the same kids, the parent is covering for them. It’s so crazy.
"(It's) not the same anymore man," Hayley Forsthoff wrote. "When they stole my truck, the road (sic) around in my neighborhood with it and then two other neighborhoods trying to steal more stuff. They actually parked it in a no parking zone at their apartment complex and it got towed. That’s only reason they found it. No consequences. No trying to find the people that did it. Kids and people know that now. They can get away with murder."
Another person gave some advice on how to possibly catch the perps.
"If they are going car to car, pull out on your footage or ask the next block because there is probably an adult waiting in a vehicle that will drive them out when they are done," Michelle H-B wrote. "It happened in our neighborhood, but they didn’t even notice our cameras."
Another commenter gave some sage advice to the burglars.
"Someone will hurt them," Kee Ratliff wrote. "They better chill."
If you have any information about this case or any other crime, call Lafayette Crime Stoppers at 337-232-TIPS.