Burglars Target Baton Rouge Neighborhood

According to Baton Rouge Police crime statistics, there were almost 4,000 burglaries in Baton Rouge in 2005. Some of those burglaries were businesses, but many of those were homes, and many of those were homes were in average, safe-looking neighborhoods.

Since late December, the Parkview Oaks subdivision, located near the intersection of Airline Highway and Sherwood Forest, has been targeted by burglars. One of the homeowners who was hit was Katherine Horwinski. She remembers coming home that day and noticing something that should be inside, lying in her driveway.

"It was on the ground in the carport," she said. "I just sort of had that sinking feeling of 'this is out of place, something's wrong.' "

Then Katherine went inside her house. "It was like the sort of thing you see in movies... Somebody's rifled through everything, dumped out every drawer, taken all the mattresses of the bed. You can't even walk through."

Just like the other houses, the burglars found a back door, one that couldn't be seen from the street, and kicked it in. Katherine lost almost $25,000 worth of property... some of it sentimental, some of it very important to her research as a PhD student because the thieves hit her home office as well.

"I walked in, it had been full of computer equipment... It was completely empty."

But they weren't ordinary computers, they had French operating systems and French keyboards; things not easily replaced. That following week, she put in an alarm system. And her wood gate, that used to cross the driveway and block the view from the street, is being replaced by an iron gate, one that you can see through, making it difficult for would-be burglars to hide behind. All good way to make your house less inviting.

During the time of these burglaries, witnesses saw a Ford Taurus -- or a vehicle like it -- driving through the area. The car was a light color, possibly gold. Police think that car may have something to do with all of these burglaries.

If you think you can help, please call Crime Stoppers at 344-STOP.

Reporter: Matt Williams