BEDFORD, N.Y.— A 19-year-old woman returned to her Haines Road house Monday only to discover a burglary in progress, according to Bedford police.
The woman entered the home around noon, police said, and saw her poodle standing on the landing upstairs. This made the woman suspicious as it was unusual for the dog to be there, police said.
An unknown man then emerged from the master bedroom and told her he was from the ADT security company, police said. It is possible there was an ADT sign on the lawn that prompted the man to use this explanation as a cover, police said.
The woman confronted him, and within seconds, the man fled, making off with her keys and cell phone and driving away in her car, police said. The car has not yet been recovered.
Bedford police and Westchester County Police both responded to Monday’s scene. A rash of burglaries had occurred on this same street in 2008, frightening residents, said Bedford police Lt. Jeff Dickan.
The woman described the suspect as white with a tan complexion, unshaven and about 5-foot-8-inches tall and 175 pounds.
Dickan said this is not much information to go on, and officers are working the case with what they can find. “It’s not a lot. We’re just doing some follow-up stuff now,” he said.
It initially was reported the woman was tied up during the confrontation, but Dickan could not verify this aspect of the incident.
Dickan said the holidays are one time during the year the frequency of burglaries tends to increase, and he advised residents to keep their doors locked at all times as a preventative measure. Burglaries and thefts also increase at businesses during this time of the year, he said.
One explanation for the jump is that financial hardship can become more apparent during this consumer-oriented season. Additionally, the holidays often create more stress, he said.
“Vulnerability gets higher as the stress level gets higher is the way I see it,” Dickan said. More cash is in shop drawers, and store owners are busy with multiple customers.
Just such a burglary occurred Thursday night at Kelloggs & Lawrence General Store in Katonah, when five people used techniques of distraction to keep an employee busy while one of them stole from the store's safe.