Burglar captured on surveillance video breaking into Phoenix home for sale

PHOENIX - An empty home on the market became a target for a burglar. Surveillance video captured the bizarre break-in over the span of about two hours with the man seen coming and going.

Cameras are everywhere around Jered Van Houten's home up for sale.

On Wednesday, they captured a burglar creeping around the home near 31st Street and Osborn Road — determined to make his way in.

"It freaked me out,” Van Houten said.

Sixteen surveillance cameras capture the man stealing the mail, trying to pry several doors open, climbing on top of a shed, stealing a saw, and busting open the laundry room.

He ran off after triggering the alarm.

Thankfully, Van Houten and his family were not home.

"I shudder of the idea of thinking what could have happened,” he said.

An hour and a half later, video shows the burglar come back with a different shirt on and without a hat. This time, he steals the realtor key box then leaves, and returns with the key that was inside the box.

Van Houten thinks his home was targeted because of the sign advertising the home is for sale — even though the house is empty.

"Your light fixtures your fans, basically if somebody knows that a house is completely empty and nobody's monitoring it, it's a free-for-all,” Van Houten said.

He got the word out to neighbors about the man in the video.

"Make sure that they (neighbors) know what's going on,” Van Houten said. He said, even when your home is secure you can never have too many eyes on the street.

Police said Thursday that an arrest had been made in the case. Forty-eight-year-old Thomas Gonzalez was booked into jail on charges of criminal damage and burglary. 

 

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