Police believe brazen serial ‘smash-and-grab’ burglar prowling island

A serial burglar unfazed by daylight hours or locked doors and who typically uses “smash-and-grab” techniques is believed to be roaming quiet neighborhoods across the island, Bainbridge Island Police Chief Matthew Hamner said Wednesday.

Guns, prescription drugs, jewelry and generally small, easily concealable items seem to be targeted by the burglar.

Remote areas far from the Winslow downtown area have been burglarized, particularly places near a cemetery and removed from nearby parking. These locations would offer the burglar with a place to stage a getaway vehicle.

Police believe the burglar could be casing areas in a vehicle and then returning on foot.

When residents spot suspicious people and vehicles in their neighborhood, they are encouraged to call 911. Unfamiliar people coming into their driveways or yards also warrant calls.

“Please don’t be hesitant to call 911 to report suspicious activity,” Hamner said. “My officers are here and ready to respond 24 hours a day. We would rather have a call turn out to be nothing than to have another one of our residents victimized.

“We need the community to be our extra sets of eyes and ears in order to catch this burglar,” Hamner added.

Bainbridge Islander, Police, ,

About Ethan Fowler

Ethan Fowler has more than 20 years of journalism experience with 19 years of daily and weekly newspaper experience covering news, features and sports, as well as being an editor for 14 of those years. He has won several writing awards over the years in Washington state, Virginia, Texas and Georgia, including award-winning investigative journalism. Fowler was paid by the Review & Herald Publishing Association in 2009 to co-author a book, "Brushed Back: The Story of Trevor Bullock," with his wife. The book details the real life of a top minor league pitcher in the Philadelphia Phillies organization and his Christian faith. "Brushed Back" has sold more than 2,000 copies since its release.