To the editor:
Our household has recently suffered its second burglary within a period of less than six weeks. The first was simply breaking the locks of a couple of sheds at a remote location; those items taken valued less than the insurance deductible.
The second was much more serious and extensive. One of the outbuildings from the previous burglary, my shop at our residence, our RV, and attached garage were the targets. For all intents and purposes, since the garage allows direct access to the house, my wife’s and my physical well-being were at risk as well because we were in bed asleep during the entire burglary.
Fortunately, prompt action by the Noble County Sheriff’s department recovered most of our losses within the same day. The most expensive item has yet to be recovered. I have received notification from the Noble County Prosecutor’s office that two suspects have been arrested for the second burglary. (No suspects have been identified for the first.) A trial is upcoming. They have been charged with a level 6 felony. By Googling this offense, I learned that in the state of Indiana, it is punishable by up to a two-year incarceration with a recommended sentence of one year.
What kind of sentence is my family facing? Monetarily, the first burglary was paid for out of our pocket (less than $500). As a direct result of the second burglary, the insurance deductible plus depreciation of equipment will be at my expense — a much higher figure than before. In addition, we have purchased an alarm system that includes monthly monitoring fees.
Secondary to the money is the personal concern that this could happen again with even worse consequences to us physically. We feel as if we are facing a life sentence of being ever more vigilant in locking doors and restricting access to our properties. I have lived 67 years on this same property, so some people might consider this a short sentence. Hopefully, it will be more than a year, which is all the sentence the thieves may receive. Who gets the worst end of the deal?
If there is a lesson in this, be vigilant. If something does not look right, either investigate or call the authorities. I understand that law enforcement cannot be everywhere; and if they were, we would be upset at that. It is up to each of us to keep our neighborhoods safe.