Property crime spikes in Richland

Property crime spikes in Richland »Play Video
RICHLAND, Wash. - The KEPR Crime Tracker is honing in on an increase of property crime in Richland.

From car prowls to home burglaries the number of crimes is on track to be higher this year.

Russ Burke has lived in Richland for decades.
He's seen his fair share of crime around Sanford Avenue.
It's why Russ has motion lights on his house -- hoping to keep thieves at bay.

He said, "I watch the neighborhood when I get up, all hours of the day, so I'm kinda the watch dog."

As the one-man, unofficial, block watch he's had to call the cops a few times.
Russ insists he's more concerned with the safety of his neighbors than his own.

"We had a little bit of drug problems here next door, down the street, a couple houses. The police were up several times for that," he said.

Russ believes he paid the price for making those calls. His home became the bulls-eye and he was burglarized.

Now he has double locks and even puts sticks in his windows.
His prevention methods are for good reason.

Russ's neighborhood around Sanford Avenue, just past Thayer has seen the most crimes since the summer.

These stats show just how big the problem is in Richland.
The number of homes burglarized is roughly the same, about 30 since July.
However, the number of cases reported this year is on track to be higher than the same time as last year.

As for car prowls the numbers are already higher than reported last year, 53 so far since July.

It's up to everyone to take extra methods, like Russ, to prevent becoming a victim.

Russ said, "I'd like to see more patrols go around the neighborhood and I'm sure my neighbors would too."

He's hoping to send a message to criminals, they aren't welcomed here.

Richland police say you're still making yourself a target for thieves, 86 percent of the cars that were ransacked were unlocked.

Police say that's a significant jump from what it's been.

Their message remains, lock it when you leave it.