Residents of Somerset Township are being advised by state police to secure outbuildings and keep doors to their vehicles locked after a rash of burglaries and thefts.
Since the beginning of May, state police have responded to almost a dozen burglaries in addition to receiving reports of thefts and thefts from motor vehicles in the mostly rural community.
“There is definitely a burglary ring,” said Trooper Sarah Teagarden. “Most of what they are taking are welding leads and scrap metal.”
Teagarden is investigating burglaries reported on Vanceville, Circle and Hetherington roads as well as Carlton Drive. She said that a building at Chippewa Golf Course also was entered. Thefts and thefts from vehicles have also been reported on Lusk and Lanik roads.
“We do have some surveillance of two people getting out of what we believe is a Pontiac sedan and walking into a barn,” Teagarden said. “They are not hitting homes, but rather outbuildings and sheds.”
“If you have any way of securing outbuildings, secure them,” she added. “Also keep vehicles locked.”
Teagarden said two all-terrain vehicles also have been stolen from the area. She suggests removing keys from the ignitions and securing those as well, if possible.
Teagarden said that most of the crimes are occurring overnight, likely by someone who is addicted to heroin and needs to steal items that can be pawned.
Anyone who sees suspicious activity is urged to call police at 724-223-5200. Teagarden also asks that any resident who may have captured suspicious activity with a surveillance camera to notify police.