By Melissa Garcia
DENVER (CBS4) – Police have arrested a suspected serial burglar believed to be responsible for dozens of break-ins and bicycle thefts in Denver’s Stapleton neighborhood.
Residents said area homes have been hit hard since October.
According to a police lieutenant’s post on a neighborhood social media site, officers recovered a massive amount of stolen property from the home of the alleged burglar who was arrested on Friday.
Many people have fallen victim to the break-ins after leaving their garage doors open, the post explained.
One resident’s surveillance cameras captured the thief in action.
“This isn’t the first time that we’ve been burglarized,” said Greg Garner in an interview with CBS4’s Melissa Garcia.
Garner, fed up with burglaries in his Stapleton community, installed video cameras on his property.
It did not take long before their lenses captured video of a man cruising through the alley behind his house on a bike around 3 a.m.
As video shows, the hooded man in the video stops and peers into the garage with a flashlight. He returns minutes later with bolt cutters, enters the garage, and steals a bike.
Surveillance cameras captured images of the man returning again a short time later and trying to enter Garner’s home through a back door. Fortunately, that attempt was unsuccessful since the door was locked.
“According to the police department, this individual is responsible for 20 to 30 burglaries over the course of the past six months,” Garner said.
Seeing the crime on video alarmed him.
“Just the way he came creeping into the garage; he was looking around. He tried to get in the back door. I wasn’t so much scared for my safety, but I have a wife and a daughter, and I have a young son,” Garner said.
“It’s a little scary,” added Jeff Dorchester, another Stapleton resident. “But that’s why we keep everything locked around here, all the time. You never leave your garage open.”
Dorchester also put up surveillance that he can watch from his phone at any time.
On Saturday, he joined other neighbors in a collective sigh of relief in learning that police had caught the brazen bike bandit.
“I can replace the bicycle,” Garner said. “I was just really concerned that he was going to get into someone’s house, and that it would turn into something more than a burglary.”
Denver police could not comment on the case or provide any further information about the arrest.
In the social media post, however, police said that detectives planned to reach out to victims in an effort to return the stolen valuables to their rightful owners.