Unknown suspects break into 6 cars, steal 2, in Estero gated community

Writer: Derrick Shaw
Published: Updated:
Two unknown suspects, who broke into six cars and stole two, caught on a victim’s home security camera in Estero Saturday.

Multiple unknown suspects broke into at least six cars and stole two cars.

Southwest Florida Crime Stoppers is asking for the public’s help identifying these suspects, who committed crimes at the Colonial Oaks gated community in Estero Saturday night.

The unknown suspects burglarized a minimum of six cars in the gated community. Each one of the cars targeted were left unlocked, with personal items stolen. In addition to the break-ins, two cars were stolen outright after spare keys were left inside the unlocked cars.

Kari Mendez, a homeowner in Colonial Oaks was one of the victim’s whose car was broken into by the suspects. She arrived home around 9:40 p.m. Saturday to relieve her babysitter. She said she left her garage door open for mere minutes.

“The moment she opened the door to go to the garage she yelled right away, ‘Kari, there are people running from your car,'” Mendez said.

Mendez dialed 911 to alert law enforcement.

“There’s actually still fingerprint dust on here,” Mendez said the next day, as she looked at her car door.

Mendez was not the lone victim of car burglary Saturday with at least five other burglary victims.

Also, two stolen cars have yet to be found, and a neighbor said the community plans to meet and discuss solutions to this problem.

“Criminals are constantly looking for easy prey, and unlocked vehicles are a prime target,” said Trish Routte, Crime Stoppers coordinator. “Residents may feel that because they live in a gated community that they are immune to crime and may let their guard down.”

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