This morning, we woke up with the news that there was another burglar attack last night victimizing several houses. Again, as with the previous attack in Camp JMC where three houses were robbed in a single night – the preferred items were cellphones, laptops, and other gadgets (aside from cash of course).
Since the Cadre cannot be expected to address these concerns, it is best that Camp Phillips residents should make sure that they make their homes burglar-proof.
Understand that the TWO ENEMIES of burglars are TIME and VISIBILITY. Make it hard for those thieves to open your house and they will abandon their plans.
Here are some tips:
1. Lock that CR window. Part of the modus operandi is to break open the CR window and let a small child come in. The small child then opens the door for burglars to come in. Most probably, the small child is dressed in black and wears gloves and socks to minimize noise.
2. Trim those bushes and shrubs. Camp Phillips residents are fond of growing shrubs. Unfortunately, bushes, shrubs and trees provide places to hide and camouflage signs of a break-in. Trim back any overgrown vegetation so that your home’s windows, porches and doors are visible to neighbors and passersby.
3. Needless to say, double lock those windows. Burglary is a crime of opportunity. Burglars look for signs of entry and an open window or screen doors are too tempting to overlook. Lock doors from within using a padlock. That way, even if a child breaks entry from a small window, he cannot open the door.
4. Keep your backdoors and garage well-lighted. Use those energy-efficient bulbs to save electricity. Burglars operate in the dark.
5. Practice an impeccable safekeeping. Stop that habit of leaving cellphones and laptops in the sala or the dining room. Don’t leave your wallets in the side table or even in drawers. In Cebuano, there is a term called “motultol” – burglars know where the wallets are kept because we are predictable. Hide cash, jewelry and other valuables in the most unlikely places.
6. Survey the house before going to sleep. Understand that it is possible that the child is ALREADY inside the house during day time when people are out of the house, or when the yaya is the only one left and she is probably watching Showtime. When she gets the “hinalay”, the house is open for entry. Make sure there are no spaces for the child to hide inside, and that includes under the bed. How did the burglars know where the wallets are placed in that JMC incident? The child was already inside, that is one probability.
7. If you can afford, install an alarm system. However, if you can’t, install a homemade alarm. Bells, chimes, and other sound-making things can be placed in specific locations. I place glasses outside my bedroom door. The sound will not wake me, but it will alarm the burglar. That is all that matters.