Santa Ana complex seeing brazen burglaries while residents sleeping

SANTA ANA, Calif. (KABC) -- Santa Ana police are working to tackle a spike in burglaries at an apartment complex that has left residents there frightened.

The Villa Del Sol apartment complex has seen five burglaries since Friday, says Santa Ana police officer Maria Lopez.

In two of those instances the suspects entered the home through an unlocked door or window and stood over the two female victims, then touched or groped them.

"When a suspect is now touching our victims it definitely heightens our level of alert and our response to these types of calls," Lopez said.

Cesar Torres, who lives in the Villa Del Sol apartment community, says he was alarmed to see a shadowy figure standing next to his bed after 3 a.m.

Cesar says he saw a shadow in the corner of his dark bedroom. The bandit looked at him as he woke up. Cesar says the suspect got inside after first jumping over a fence and opening his sliding glass door.

Police say the bandit slipped into Cesar's home through an unlocked door. He was startled coming face to face with the burglar.

"I moved my blanket and I chased him out the front door," Cesar said. "I almost grabbed him. I was like a yard away. But he went outside my front door and he made a cut. But my apartment complex is so big, so I lost him."

Cesar says the burglar took off with multiple items, including his money, jewelry, wallet and passport.

Luckily Cesar was not hurt.

Police believe there could be more burglaries possibly connected to the same suspects and they want any other residents whose homes might have been burglarized to come forward.

Police want you to be vigilant about locking up at night. They say the bandits usually strike after midnight.

Officers are even canvassing the community reminding residents to lock up their homes.

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