Pissing me off today:
There has been a ridiculous rash of break-ins in my neighborhood lately. A few weeks ago, some of the break-ins (literally on our block - people a few houses over) were "hot," i.e. with residents home. They've lately been breaking into homes in broad daylight when nobody is home. They knock on the door to see if anyone is around; if not they circle to the back or basement door, kick it in, and smash and grab electronics and jewelry. At least once, they were caught in the act but there was a getaway driver.
They hit the house 5 doors down a few days ago; we live at one end of a block and at least four homes on a block of ~16 homes have been hit in the past few weeks. At least several other homes on nearby blocks have also been hit. Our next door neighbor (Sally's mom, ha!) reports that an 8-10 year old boy knocked on her door yesterday and she answered. He asked if she needed someone to mow her lawn; he was clearly not of lawnmowing age or capability.
Everyone suspects it's more or less a bunch of kids; maybe 15-18 years old. One neighbor caught them walking up his driveway wearing ski masks, grabbed his pistol, and shouted them off.
I don't think they are necessarily violent given what's gone down to date, but we basically feel like sitting ducks. We have an alarm and cameras, though for the moment, I am having trouble with the DVR software to let me access the cameras, which appear to be on but I can't tell for sure. I fear for my dogs, who are just little Yorkies; not much use for home defense and may prove too much temptation for someone to steal. I'm not sure if the stories of little dogs being used as bait dogs for dog fighting are true, but they frighten me, but even if it were just to sell or keep for their own it bothers me. Or more likely, they'd just get punted as they tried to defend the home. My shit is insured; we went through and photographed all our valuables, watches, jewelry, etc. last night but it's just really shitty to be hiding your own stuff in your own house in case you get smash-and-grabbed.
It's also hard not to start seeing Zimmerman parallels when you are pretty sure there's at least one very small kid peripherally involved, and you're pretty sure it's a bunch of adolescents breaking into homes when residents are there. It's brazen and frightening and if you don't want to defend your home with a gun, well, the fact is you're just letting them get away with it. They've been getting away with it for weeks now, hitting the same blocks, repeatedly, even in a community with private security and supposedly a stepped-up police presence.