Police are warning of an uptick in burglaries in Marina district apartment buildings, saying unwitting residents might be inviting the crooks indoors.
The burglars are hitting multiunit buildings between Buchanan Street and west of Polk Street, according to cops at the Northern Police Station.
Burglary reports in the area have been on the rise during the past few months, police reported. Some of the heists have followed an all-too-common pattern.
Crooks are sneaking into the hallways and garages of buildings, then stealing from cars or kicking in apartment doors to get at the loot, Northern Police Station Capt. Ann Mannix said.
Some might be invading the buildings in plain view — the crooks will sneak in behind residents as they enter the front door to a complex, Mannix said.
She is advising residents not to let anyone into buildings unless they are certain the person lives there. Many residents can be too nice about letting people inside who they don’t know, Mannix said.
“Many times, these people are pretty noncriminal looking,” she said. “They’re normal people.”
Mannix said residents can do their part to stop the thefts. They should tell strangers following them into buildings that they don’t mean to be rude, but cannot let them inside for security reasons, she said.
Also, residents should make sure the front door is shut so crooks can’t sneak in while they aren’t looking, according to police.
Crooks also are using the sneak-in tactic to raid multiuse garages in the area. Often, drivers open the garage door, drive to their parking spot, then return to close the garage, Mannix said. While they are parking, crooks can sneak in, she said.
To avoid this, residents should pull into the garage and shut the door before parking, Mannix said.
“These people are opportunists,” she said. “No reason to help them.”