A note from… Officer Maria Gray: Recent burglaries in Brentwoo

A note from…
OFFICER Maria Gray
Senior Lead Officer for Basic Car 8A13, BrentwoodArea
Los Angeles Police Department
West Los Angeles Division
(310) 444-0744
May 30, 2018

Detectives know from experience that crime tends to rise during the warmer, summer months. Burglary detectives specifically, also know this to be true, as do the burglars who make their living by stealing your stuff. But more importantly, do YOU know this? Have you prepared for this fact of life in Los Angeles?
Folks tend to leave their homes for extended getaways and vacations during this season. The other factor is that residential windows are more often left open and/or unsecured due to the heat. We have experienced a sharp and notable spike of burglaries (four in the last few days) within the Brentwood area bordered by Saltair Ave on the east, Mandeville Canyon on the West, Sunset Blvd on the South and Hanley Ave on the North. Specifically (and rounded to the nearest 100 block for the sake of privacy) they have occurred at:
· 5/24/18, 800block of Hanley
· 5/26/18, 200block of N. Saltiar
· 5/29/18, 800block of Hanley
· 5/29/18, 700block of Kenter
· 5/29/18, 1000block of Hanley
In some cases, the burglars accessed the homes through side or rear kitchen windows—windows that were either left open/unsecured or were pried/forced open. Detectives have also mentioned to me that in some cases, the homes were quite concealed by high fences and landscaping. While this affords people privacy, it also allows for burglars to walk comfortably around your property without being seen from the street or by neighbors (please consider making environmental design changes to remedy this). At present time, there is no suspect or vehicle description that I can share with the community. If things change, I will send out a supplemental notification. Property taken has been jewelry, watches and cash.
For those of you who have already heard these suggestions, please excuse the redundancy, but at present,one of the best tools to protect your home today is a system of instant notification . You want a system that has your smart phone alert you immediately when someone is at your front door, AND alerts you when they are along either side of your home,AND alerts you when they are to the rear of your home. Nothing less will suffice, in my opinion (and the opinion of many of my fellow officers). The traditional home alarm systems can be a very low priority in terms of police response, but if you call 911 and tell the operator that you see someone in your backyard right now, and here’s their description and here’s what they’re doing, the priority gets bumped up to a lights and sirens scenario and the likelihood of the thief or thieves getting caught or deterred goes up considerably. So does the likelihood that you’ll retain your possessions.
These systems are relatively inexpensive, easy to install with either rechargeable batteries or hardwired or even solar options. To see examples of these systems in action, go to www.youtube.com and search ‘Ring Video Doorbell’ Helps Bust Gang Member in Home and just scroll from there.
Please monitor the criminal activity in your neighborhood via www.crimemapping.com . Through this website, you can receive email alerts as to what’s going on in the radius and time frame you choose.
Feel free to contact me should you have any questions or concerns.

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Do you have RING? be sure to take a trip through Ring Neighborhoods

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Anyone can download the Ring app for free and receive theft/security alerts which are posted by neighbors with Ring doorbells.
Once you’ve installed your Ring app and set up your Ring device, be sure to take a trip through Ring Neighborhoods.
Click to download the RING app

From LAPD Senior Lead Officer Maria Gray: Brentwood is Easy Target for Auto Burglars

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From SLO Maria Gray:
During a recent deep cleaning of our Community Relations Office, the cleaning crew inadvertently severed my phone line and broke the phone jack. I’ve created a ‘work order’ for a replacement but in the meantime, my phone is out of order. Please email me if you have questions or concerns at 30469@lapd.online Or the main office number for our Community Relations Office is 310-444-0735. I’ll send out another notice when the repair is made… Thanks for your patience!!

NON-EMERGENCY: 1-877-275-5273
All other City Services : 311

Maria Gray
Senior Lead Officer
West Los Angeles Community Police Station
Office: 310-444-0744
Email: 30469@lapd.lacity.org
Website: www.lapdonline.org

From BHA mailing
Brentwood is Easy Target for Auto Burglars

A group of teenagers who regularly visited Brentwood to engage in car theft have been arrested. They stole expensive cars, such as Teslas, Mercedes, BMW etc, which they drive around town, trying to find chop shops. Owners leave cars unlocked, and often with their FOB on the console inside. As teenagers, they are subject to catch and release treatment. When asked why steal cars in Brentwood, their response, “because it’s so easy.”
So please, lock your cars, even if you are running inside for a second!

The city plans to allocate more officers, mainly for South Brentwood where burglaries are higher.
BCC minutes

According to Lead Officer Maria Gray, “each success these thieves have provides them with the positive reinforcement that draws them back to our community.” The safest way to protect your car is to park it in your garage. If you can’t do that, purchasing a LoJack or other GPS device may help retrieve your car and deter future criminal activity. Please heed this advice BEFORE you become a victim and we will ALL be safer.

LA Police Dept. Sr. Lead Officer Maria Gray: UPDATE on Door Checking

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Senior Lead Officer Maria Gray provides additional information on avoiding becoming a victim of this crime.

A note from… OFFICER Maria Gray: “Door Checking”

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A note from…
OFFICER Maria Gray
Senior Lead Officer for Basic Car 8A13, Brentwood Area
Los Angeles Police Department
West Los Angeles Division
(310) 444-0744

January 31, 2018

“Door Checking”
It was brought up today in our Crime Control meeting that several residential surveillance cameras located east of the 405 freeway have captured images of suspects conducting ‘Door Checking’ throughout the neighborhoods. This happens virtually everywhere unfortunately, and it’s worth a discussion to be aware of and to prevent becoming a victim.

‘Door Checking’ is simply a modus operandi of property crime suspects who walk up and down the street, mostly at night, pulling on car door handles to see if they were left unlocked to steal the car contents. If you see a suspect ‘checking’ car doors, that rises to the level as a ‘crime in progress’ (or about to be in progress) and is suitable for a 911 emergency call.

But a new added variable is that they are now expanding their door checking to include the residences. They’ll pull on a door handle of a car parked in the driveway and if unsuccessful, they go up to the house and pull on the residential door as well. If left unlocked, they enter but typically don’t go in very deep into the house—they are looking for purses or car keys on the entry table, or laptops on the coffee table, etc., that they can quickly grab and leave with. Our victims don’t even know they’ve been burglarized until after they wake up the next day. In one case, the alarm went off and woke the victims up who immediately checked their living room. When they didn’t notice that the victim’s purse was gone they went back to bed unknowing that the suspects had been in their home. Very unnerving, to say the least.

All this is even more reason to have instant notification type surveillance systems on the perimeter of your home that will alert you immediately to your Smart phone—which is typically kept at night by your bedside and accessible to you.

Lastly, if you are a victim of a theft/burglary of your MAC or other Apple device, please alert the officers taking the report whether you have a tracking device (find my I-phone) and if you’ve taken any steps to track your device. If you’re comfortable with it, you can have the officers include your Apple ID/password for the detectives to utilize. Although the suspects will try and wipe clean the device asap, sometimes the ‘tracks’ will serve toward obtaining a search warrant for detectives. All the best, Maria

Westside is getting more cops to patrol and police our neighborhoods!

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Dear Friends,
I’ve got some great news to share — the Westside is getting more cops to patrol and police our neighborhoods!
As part of an effort to enhance public safety, one year ago this week, I launched a major initiative to convince LAPD to refocus on neighborhood policing. That work has paid off: just this week, LAPD assigned 12 more officers to the 11th District — and more will be added over the next few months.
I am very grateful to Chief Charlie Beck for making these assignments, which will help make our neighborhoods safer, curtail crime, and improve response times. The new resources are already making a difference. LAPD tells me that the extra cops helped its Pacific Area bust a prolific car burglary ring this week.
For too long, fewer and fewer cops were assigned to patrol our neighborhoods, and far too many people were telling me that they rarely saw a patrol car in their neck of the woods. It was the result of a decades-long trend of de-emphasizing basic neighborhood policing in favor of specialized details and elite crime suppression units. Now, as my colleague Joe Buscaino and I proposed in our “Back to Basic Car” plan, the LAPD is moving officers from specialized details and into our neighborhoods, and hiring more civilians so well-trained and able-bodied officers can move from desk duty to neighborhood patrols and community policing.
This is an excellent example of the good that can come from neighbors working together to move Los Angeles forward, do good and get things done for our neighborhoods. Thank you to the hundreds of people who signed petitions in support of our “Back to Basic Car” program, and who joined us to call on LAPD to increase the presence of officers in our neighborhoods.
There is still work to be done, but I wanted to make sure to share this exciting new with you. Please send me a message at councilmember.bonin@lacity.org if you have any questions or if I can be of any assistance.

Councilmember, 11th District

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Senior Lead Officer Maria Gray: Tips for hiking LA trails

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Officer Gray provides tips for being safe when hiking on LA’s public trails.

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Burglary reports in the neighborhood

Reports about many suspicious people in our neighborhood have been received. Photos of them have been shared. As Judie Hulett of neighborsnetwork advises:
It is a good idea to get to know your neighbors. Collecting contact info for your block helps everyone in an emergency or crisis.
Of course contact LAPD when you see suspicious activity.
NON-EMERGENCY: 1-877-275-5273
All other City Services : 311

If you are interested in participating in Neighborhood Watch or becoming a block captain, please contact Neighborhood Watch chair Jason at jasonewilson@yahoo.com. Please include your name, email and home address and phone number.

If you are interested in ACS patrol service, contact our ACS neighborhood rep, Eino Hill. He can be reached by phone 310-903-8649 or by email at ehill@acssecurity.com.

Brentwood Community Council ALERT

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Serial Burglar

The man pictured below is responsible for seven residential and auto burglaries to south of San Vicente. Los Angeles police said the suspect is responsible for at least seven residential and car break-ins in Brentwood since September. The suspect is described as between 40 and 50 years old with a graying beard, 5 feet 9 inches tall and weighing more than 200 pounds. Several buildings in the neighborhood have been hit recently. The link is for an ABC news story about this.  Please make your neighbors are aware.


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Homeless? Harmless? Or not?? Man on Gretna Green – for hours
Wed, Nov 1, 2017 9:18 pm
Judie Hulett (judie@neighborsnetwork.net)
This is just a heads up. There is a man on Gretna Green that has been walking up and down the street for the last 9 hours hours. He is walking between the 100 to 600 block of Gretna Green Way. He may be going North or South. He looks like he is homeless but there is no guarantee that he is. He has been stopping and standing in front of houses. Neighbors have reported that they are very uncomfortable with his presence since we don’t know what he is up to. He is pushing a shopping cart. I would say just take some precaution. We do not know that he is harmless.
Remember, he can go to any street so I am including everyone in the email. If you see him do anything suspicious, please call the police. As always, let me know too.
Here is a photo:

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Suspicious canvasser:

I was leaving my home on Amherst and saw a man going door to door and acting suspicious.  He was peaking in windows of homes, after knocking, when the occupant did not answer the door.  I drove around and watched him for a few minutes going house to house. I then took photos appearing annoyed, he then ran to my car.  We had a short interaction. I saw his “paperwork”. He is taking notes on each house.

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