Home security system catches criminals in action

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By Christina O'Haver By Christina O'Haver
By Christina O'Haver By Christina O'Haver
By Christina O'Haver By Christina O'Haver
By Christina O'Haver By Christina O'Haver
By Christina O'Haver By Christina O'Haver

LAVEEN, Ariz. -- A Laveen homeowner is hoping video of two culprits breaking into his home and stealing his stuff will lead to their arrests.

Mike, who asked 3TV not to use his last name, said the break-in happened on Monday.

"The house was pretty much turned upside down. They stole several items, from clothing to a PS3 and a bunch of games," he said.

The entire incident was captured on his home security system, which he had installed for a few reasons, the first being peace of mind.

"I think a lot of people who've had their homes broken into have that question of, 'Who did this?' And having a security system, you know who did it; you get to put a face to the crime," he said.

The video shows two males, who appear to be teenagers, ringing the doorbell then going around to the side yard to continue casing the house.

Mike said they eventually broke a window, which is how they got into his home.

"They're taking their time. It's like they have no worries," he said.

Mike handed the video over to police, and then shared it with 3TV in the hopes that someone will recognize the teens and turn them in.

"I think that having security footage puts a face to a fingerprint to a name and eventually is going to lead to an arrest," he said.

Phoenix police agree.

Sgt. Derek Elmore with Silent Witness says home security systems are becoming more prevalent, partially because the cost has come down.

"It's very useful," Elmore said.

In fact, Elmore told 3TV that video evidence can help cut down on the time it takes to investigate a crime.

"When all you have is that you know you had a break-in, the person wasn't supposed to be there, and maybe you have a fingerprint, that could take months, maybe even years, to get that person identified," he said.

Mike doesn't have that kind of time. He says one day after his house was broken into, his neighbor's house was also burglarized.

Now, the neighborhood is coming together to help keep an eye out.

"If anybody's walking down the street that doesn't belong in one of these houses, we can pretty much guarantee we're going to be watching them," Mike said. "And if we see any suspicious activity, we're going to be calling the cops."

If you recognize the teens in the video, call Phoenix police.