Palo Alto, CA – Police are investigating a residential burglary that occurred early yesterday morning while the residents were asleep inside. The unknown suspect is at large.
On Thursday, October 22, 2020, at about 6:20 a.m., our 24-hour dispatch center received a call of a residential burglary at a home in the 1100 block of Hamilton Avenue. The victims, a couple in their sixties, reported that they had discovered two exterior doors to their home open when they woke up. The ensuing investigation revealed that between 4:10 a.m. (when one of the victims had last secured the home) and 6:15 a.m., an unknown suspect had entered the residence and stole electronic items and keys to a vehicle. The vehicle itself was not stolen. No force was used to enter the home; police believe it is possible that the suspect located a house key hidden outside the residence and used that key to gain entry while the residents slept. There is no surveillance video of the suspect. The victims have since rekeyed their home and the ignition of their vehicle.
Overnight residential burglaries are extremely rare in Palo Alto. Most residential burglars commit their crimes during the day, when homes are unoccupied and the chance of a confrontation with a resident are correspondingly reduced. If you have a side yard gate, police recommend putting locks on them to prevent easy unauthorized access to your property. If you choose to hide a key outside your residence in the event you ever get locked out, recognize that involves a potential risk; as an alternative, consider leaving a spare house key with a trusted neighbor.
There is no evidence linking this crime to the two occupied residential burglaries that occurred in the middle of the night on October 12 (refer to the news release with details of those two cases here). Those cases occurred more than three miles away.
Anyone with information about this incident is asked to call our 24-hour dispatch center at 650-329-2413. Anonymous tips can be e-mailed to firstname.lastname@example.org or sent via text message or voice mail to 650-383-8984. Tips can also be submitted anonymously through our free mobile app, downloadable at bit.ly/PAPD-AppStore or bit.ly/PAPD-GooglePlay.