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Thieves Strike As Nice Weather Opens Windows

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FAYETTEVILLE — The warm weather has sparked a dangerous strain of Spring Fever. People are opening up their windows to let in the breeze, but they are also letting in thieves.

This part of the year is the in-between weather. In-between using the heater and air-conditioner. Everyone wants to enjoy the fresh air, but that can make houses and cars easy targets.

"The criminals don't want to work too hard, and when you leave any of your windows or doors open your just giving them the easiest way in," says Kathleen Ruppert, a crime prevention specialist.

Like most everyone else, Champagne Lister loves the recent weather. So much so he left his mini-van windows open, an inviting target for criminals. Lister also admits he is guilty of leaving the windows in his home open when he makes quick trips.

"That's something I do all the time because the store right around the corner," Lister said, "and you think you have a few minutes and who's going to kick in your window or screen so quickly, but it does happen."

Police say statistics show when the weather gets nicer and outdoor enthusiasts take walks and begin yard work, criminals take note and prey on those people.

"If you're in your yard doing yard work make sure your back door or your front door is closed and locked," Ruppert said. "You can carry a key with you just like if you were going to the store. Don't leave first floor windows open to get air unless they are pinned, in which case you can only keep them open a couple of inches."

Police say if people follow these simple steps they should not become a victim.

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John McDonnell, Reporter
Doug Bricker, Photographer
Jason Darwin, Web Editor

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