LA MESA, Calif. (KGTV) — A La Mesa home that was being fumigated for termites was burglarized Wednesday evening, according to the family.
"It's a shame," longtime neighborhood gardener Kit Brett said, lamenting with a neighbor about the burglary so soon after Christmas.
"It's my biggest fear, I always keep everything locked when I'm in the house," Diane Helmer said. Her son and daughter-in-law live a few houses down from the family who was burglarized.
What the criminal didn't realize was there were two signs indicating a home security system, watching their every move. Neighbor Katy Holm told 10News the homeowners' phone alerted them of movement inside the home, around 7:40 p.m. They called police who locked down the neighborhood.
"My neighbors are very private people to start with, a wonderful family with three children," Holm said.
Every neighbor who spoke with 10News was shocked anyone would risk their life to steal.
"They don't realize your skin's your biggest organ and everything, that, that chemical sucks right into your skin," Brett said.
"Makes me wonder if it's somebody who has knowledge of how to protect themselves against those sorts of chemicals and maybe they're targeting tented homes, and it's something they should be aware of," Holm said.
10News reported on two similar stories in 2018, one in Oceanside and the other in Skyline. After a spike in tented home break-ins in Los Angeles, police told homeowners to remove valuables and put dowels in windows so they can only open a few inches.
In La Mesa, neighbors like Brett hope for an arrest. "Justice comes around little by little," he said.
If you know anything about this crime please contact La Mesa Police. As of the publishing of this article, the La Mesa Police have not returned our calls.
The family did not want to release the video for fear of interfering with the police investigation.