Another residential burglary near the Key West Cemetery

skinney@keynoter.comFebruary 5, 2014 

Following a sharp spike in burglaries around the Key West Cemetery, police are offering a $5,000 reward for information leading to an arrest or arrests. Whitmarsh Lane, seen here, is representative of the dense and narrow residential streets around the cemetery. 

BY SEAN KINNEY

After a three-week lull following a meeting between worried residents and Key West police, another burglary of an occupied structure was reported Jan. 29 in the area surrounding the city's cemetery in Old Town.

Police Chief Donie Lee told residents in a packed Jan. 8 session that there were more than 40 burglaries reported in the neighborhood between Sept. 15 and Dec. 15. He ordered extra patrols and plainclothes officers into the area, and there's a $5,000 reward posted.

Neighbors have been keeping each other up to date on the burglaries through a Facebook page and other means.

The latest break-in considered part of the spree was reported at Olga Turcan and Constantin Azman's Olivia Street house around 4:30 p.m. Jan. 29. They told police that sometime the night before, someone broke in while they slept and took a laptop computer, wallet, GPS, pack of Marlboro Lights and some tax documents, according to a report from Officer Todd Stevens.

Turcan and Azman "demonstrated how the [side gate] had been broken in order to open it," Stevens reported. "The wooden storm shutter and the window pane had been removed in order to force entry into the house. The window pane was lying on the ground underneath the window."

Stevens couldn't find any fingerprints when he dusted the window.

Police haven't found evidence to confirm one person is responsible for the multiple breaks-ins, although that's the consensus of residents who took to their social media page to discuss the latest incident.

Susie Rodnon called the alleged burglary "pretty brazen" while Jan Bye of Olivia Street, which runs parallel to Angela one block away, said she and her husband had put "storekeeper type bells on their doors," calling the situation "scary."

"We find ourselves sleeping with all our small electronics," purse and wallet at hand.

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