"It looks like they were renting a storage unit in the same complex that some of the victims were located, and they would burglarize the units by cutting the locks, and then placing the property in their own storage units and replacing the locks," said Lt. Travis Whitman of the Garden Grove Police Department.
Many victims had no idea anything was missing until they checked their storage unit.
Police began investigating after they discovered truckloads of stolen items while searching a vacant home in Midway City during an unrelated investigation in November. While most of the goods have been returned, there are still tens of thousands of dollars worth of belongings that no one has claimed.
"We have antiques and china and other property that we know means something to somebody," Whitman said.
Police are looking for multiple suspects.
If you find out you are missing property, you can call the Garden Grove Police Department at (714) 741-5815.
"I keep hearing new and inventive ways to break in or get something that's not yours," said Tony Copeland of Huntington Beach. "To me, it's just another example of the times and people trying to survive."