The house in the 900 block of Lakeland Avenue in Valdosta that was burglarized on Friday
A Valdosta Police car in the parking lot of the Valdosta Police Department
VALDOSTA, GA (WALB) -
Valdosta Police Brian Childress is in the process of putting together a special unit within the department to focus specifically on solving and preventing burglaries.
Childress was supposed to speak with WALB on camera today, but backed out at the last minute citing a family emergency.
Lieutenant Aaron Kirk, though, says this new unit should help decrease burglaries in Valdosta.
"Anytime you have detectives that are specifically investigating or combating burglaries," said Kirk, "they're not having to investigate a burglary one day and a forgery the next day and they specialize on that and focus on that, it will help them being able to combat these burglaries."
Kirk said, overall, he doesn't believe burglaries have increased in Valdosta, but pointed out that that doesn't mean they don't happen.
"I think it really hasn't changed a whole lot. Burglaries, for the most part, being property crimes are prevalent in most cities, most areas," explained Kirk.
Last Friday afternoon, two men broke into a home in the 900 block of Lakeland Avenue. When police arrived, one of the suspects, 22 year old Jarvis Bryant fled the scene, hitting an officer with his car.
The homeowner says this isn't the first time his home has been targeted.
"I knew that they had a couple attempted burglaries already at my house, and I wish I had been at the house at the time so I could protect my own belongings," said Travis Burke, who was at work when police called and notified him that his house was being robbed.
Burke said he's even considered moving because of the repeated burglary attempts.
"I have debated it," Burke admitted.
And that's what's so frustrating to the police department.
"The frustrating part for us is that we can't be everywhere at once. That's why having concerned citizens, having neighbors that look out for neighbors, is so important to the police department," Kirk said.
Hopefully, the new burglary unit will relieve some of that frustration though.