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Walters PD searching for burglars

(Source KSWO) (Source KSWO)
(Source KSWO) (Source KSWO)

WALTERS, OK (KSWO) - Walters police said in their small town they've had at least a dozen car burglaries reported, and they suspect that they've had just as many go unreported. They said the most recent ones happened overnight Sunday night. The burglars are grabbing whatever small objects they can from unlocked doors.

Police said they believe it's a group of thieves who are from Duncan. In fact, one of the suspects was arrested a few days ago in Marlow, and that's when they realized the victims in Walters are part of a much larger group spread all over our area.

The quietness of small towns is something people enjoy, but that hasn't been the case recently.

"I feel like I can't trust anybody when I have young kids at home,” said a Walters woman who didn’t want to be identified. “I feel like I have to keep everything on lockdown. It's a small town, and I should be able to enjoy going out with my kids and not have to worry about people I don't know walking by."

The woman who had her car burglarized didn't want to go on camera, but she says her car was hit back in April.

"The entire console had been destroyed, everything taken out and went through and all the change in my door was gone," the woman said.

Officer Ben Lehew with the Walters Police Department said most of their reports are just like hers. The burglars are looking for unlocked doors, money, wallets or loose change visible as they're passing by.

"They're going out saying 'Hey let's get 20 dollars tonight, let's get 30 dollars tonight,’ Lehew said. “And they're using it for gas money and for drug money. I mean really small, instant things is what they're using the money for."

One of their suspects, Brandon Harmon of Duncan, was arrested for burglary in Marlow, and he confessed to burglarizing cars in Walters. They believe he's part of a larger group that is also hitting cars in Comanche, Marlow, Duncan and the OKC area.

Officer Lehew said the victims in Walters are scattered across town.

"We are tracking it with a map, and we have a good idea where they're hitting at majority wise,” Lehew said.  “We have extra patrols out at nighttime."

He said it's frustrating that these thieves are coming to Walters, but they're using it as motivation to catch the suspects.

"We take it very personal,” Lehew said. “That's why we are coming out at night time, and we're doing our extra best because we do take it personal. This is our town."

Lehew is also asking Walters residents to avoid any confrontation with the burglars.

The department is using undercover officers in plainclothes to try and catch the thieves, so they ask that you don't take the law into your own hands and shoot at any suspicious looking people near your property, but to call police instead.

Copyright 2017 KSWO. All Rights Reserved.

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