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Hot Apartments Lead To Open Windows, Attracting Burglars

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NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Despite the brutal cold outside this week, some New York City apartments are hot enough that residents have decided to open the windows.

And as CBS 2’s Tony Aiello reported, that trend has presented a window of opportunity for burglary crews.

It is an odd sight in a city chilled to the bone with snow on the sidewalks – windows either cracked or even wide open.

One building in Elmhurst, Queens has been so warm that there was condensation forming on the glass of Mohammed Baten’s apartment.

“It’s too much hot, so I need to take out some hot from inside to outside,” Baten said. Thus, his window was open.

Radiators in older buildings often cannot be controlled by individual thermostats.

“It’s really hot inside some of the apartments,” said Julia Leshin of Elmhurst. “You can’t control the heat, so you have to control it by cracking the window.”

And burglars have been taking advantage.

The 110th Precinct in Queens saw 35 burglaries in the most recent reporting period, compared to just 17 the year before.

And the commanding officer has been quoted blaming the burglary spike on windows left open in overheated apartments.

“I mean, it makes sense,” Leshin said. “I guess it’s sort of an opportunity that’s waiting there.”

The same thing happens in the summer during a heat wave – open windows invite burglars.

The city also has seen a number of auto thefts, as drivers start their cars and leave them unattended while they warm up.

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