String of burglaries, break-ins concern James Island residents

JAMES ISLAND, SC (WCSC) - By Sheldon Dutes  bio | email | Twitter 

JAMES ISLAND, SC (WCSC) - Raymond Caldwell has seen James Island grow over the years, but a recent string of burglaries in his neighborhood has him a little concerned.

"It's too close to home. We've never had any trouble back here," Caldwell said.

In the past few weeks, burglaries have happened at homes on Dills Bluff Road and nearby Relyea Avenue, according to the Charleston County Sheriff's Office. Not far away on Starwood Court, residents say their cars were broken into.

Deputies are investigating at least six burglaries on James Island, including the ones on Relyea Avenue and Dills Bluff Road. In those two situations, deputies say the intruder stole flat screen televisions, laptops and other high-priced electronics. In both cases the suspect got in through a back door.

"I've seen unruly characters running through the neighborhood and I've given the police their descriptions. The same day that I did that, the house two doors down was robbed," Caldwell said.

Just a few minutes away on Starwood Court, residents like Clark Creech are on edge after thieves hit their block.

"We had some break-ins. Actually they hit pretty much every vehicle on the cul-de-sac," Creech said.

Neighbors said the suspects rifled through their cars stealing valuables and even stole a gun from one car.

"We're kind of shocked because we've never really had this problem before," Creech said.

Back on Relyea Avenue, Caldwell and his neighbors are keeping their eyes peeled for any suspicious people.

"We ride the neighborhoods. [We] bike, drive the car or walk," Caldwell continued. "We know who's supposed to be coming and who's not."

Because of the recent string of break-ins and burglaries, people in both neighborhoods are being more proactive.

"Every house in the neighborhood left its lights on last night. Everyone had their porch lights on and I even turned on my lights in the backyard," Creech said.

Caldwell and his wife are also being more vigilant and cautious.

"We just lock up better and we're keeping more lights on and making sure we don't miss turning the alarm on," he said.

Deputies have not yet made a connection among the burglaries and break-ins. The investigation remains open.

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