According to St. Joseph County Police, North Liberty and Lakeville have seen an "uptick" in home break-ins.
"It's not something that is out of the ordinary, it's not something we haven't seen before. But it something we have noticed has happened recently," said Lt. Matt Blank, of the St. Joseph County Sheriff's Department.
To protect your home from theft, Blank offered "common sense" ideas. First, lock your doors and windows before heading out, even if you feel safe in your neighborhood. If you have a security alarm, always set it before heading out.
Also, communicate with your neighbors. Share information with one another and describe unusual behavior, so folks know what to look out for.
"Residents know what their surroundings are and who belongs and who doesn't belong. So, if they see anything that they think might be suspicious, whether it be a vehicle in a neighbor's driveway they haven't seen before," said Blank. "If somebody comes up to your house and asks you to find somebody that you've never heard of before, or they say they're lost or looking for directions, any number of these types of things that just don't sound right, that could be somebody trying to see if you're home," said Blank.
Blank says it's never too soon to call police. If you see something suspicious, to avoid it happening again, report it right away.
"Simple common sense things that some people take for granted can make a really big difference in this type of situation," said Blank.
If you have questions or concerns about your neighborhood, call your local police department.