NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – A Queens community was on edge Thursday, as police searched for the suspect behind a burglary spree.
“I’m very scared now, so I’m going to be much, much aware of what’s going on,” Whitestone resident Julia Nitti told CBS2’s Jenna DeAngelis, adding she’s keeping her dog close. “I am surprised, because this generally is a very quiet neighborhood.”
The NYPD said at least six homes were burglarized in the 109th Precinct in a span of six weeks. The first two in early February on the same day and in the same vicinity – 166th Street and 16th Road.
“My mom started running outside, because she’s like, oh my God there’s so much police cars around the neighborhood,” said resident Qiqi Lin, who also said her neighbor was a victim.
Several houses in the neighborhood have security cameras. Resident Charlie Podparka said he is hoping it will be a deterrent to crime.
“We’ll keep an eye on things so that we’ll be able to help the police,” he said.
One video shows a man police are looking for. Police are unclear if more people are involved in the forced-entry burglaries, which happened in broad daylight and later at night. In all but one case, those responsible walked away with jewelry or large sums of cash.
Police said no one was home at the time of the heists.
“It’s still kind of scary, you know, it’s your home, it’s your personal belongings that somebody’s coming in and searching your home, and it’s just not right,” resident Maria Anna Messina said.
Neighbors said they feel as though they are being watched.
“I hope they catch him,” said Nitti.
Now, they are keeping a close eye out.
“We all look out for each other,” Nitti added.
Many doing so with cameras rolling.