El Segundo burglaries have community on edge


A burglar cut and removed a window screen and entered a residence on West Maple Avenue in El Segundo Friday, surprising a woman in the shower. She managed to call 911. The burglar ransacked several rooms before escaping.

"She just rushed to the door, pushed it to close it," said El Segundo Police Lt. Jaime Bermudez. "The suspect did try to open it from the other side of the door and I believe there was a quick exchange of words. He took off."

Officers responded within minutes, but the suspect escaped. Police think he also burglarized another home on Mariposa Avenue the same day.

The break-ins are catching El Segundo residents by surprise. They say they think of this town as a safe community with vigilant neighbors who generally keep an eye out for trouble.

But investigators say that feeling of security can often lead residents to let down their guard. And despite seeing suspicious people, many residents fail to report them.

"When you see anyone that you don't see around your neighborhood, it's always a good idea to call the police and let us at least go out, check them out, talk to them, make sure they are legitimately in the neighborhood," said Bermudez.

Police said the burglary that occurred at the house on Maple Street happened just minutes after the woman's husband left for work, suggesting the burglar may have been watching the location.

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