Palo Alto Police Attacking Surge In Home Burglaries

Palo Alto police are struggling to contain a surge in home burglaries and other property crimes.   Statistics out earlier this week show burglaries in 2012 were up 52 percent over the previous year.  Auto break-ins and auto thefts were also up.  

Detective Sergeant Brian Philip says it's hard to pinpoint a single cause.  He says burglaries have gone up in many Peninsula cities, in part because criminals consider them soft targets.

"We all feel safe here," Philip says.  "We live in great cities.  We haven't had high crime rates.  As a result the need to lock everything and set alarms sometimes isn't first priority.  And the criminals are seizing the opportunity to exploit that."

Philip says the department has stepped up its burglary detail.  As of late December, police have arrested 38 people for residential burglary.

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