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Claremont not impacted by vacation burglary ring

Claremont residents were placed on heightened alert last week after the Los Angeles Times reported that a local burglar ring had been targeting the homes of subscribers on vacation. The burglars had allegedly obtained the list of vacationing subscribers from Duane Van Tuinen, 51, of Azusa, a repairman contracted by distributors of the major local newspaper. According to the report, a majority of the resulting burglaries took “along the 210 Freeway in eastern L.A. County and western San Bernardino County.”

Though at least 45 Times subscribers have been identified as victims in the string of ensuing burglaries, Claremont residents are not among them, according to Detective Jack Jordan of the Los Angeles Sheriff's Department’s Major Crimes Bureau on Monday morning. Most victims identified so far have resided in cities further west, Det. Jordan noted. These cities include Hacienda Heights, Walnut and West Covina.

Investigation into identifying the owners of more than $100,000 in recovered stolen items continues. Those who believe they may have been victim to these crimes are told to call the sheriff's Major Crimes Bureau at 562-946-7893 with a police report number and list of stolen property.

Since its original report, Los Angeles Times spokesperson Nancy Sullivan says the newspaper is making changes to its policies to ensure such incidents do not happen again. Among policy changes, the Times will no longer provide distributors with sits subscribers vacationing information.

“The Times sympathizes with those who have been harmed and joins the other victims in thanking the Sheriff's Department for their hard work,” said spokesperson Nancy Sullivan as reported by the Los Angeles Times last week. We continuously review and upgrade our policies and systems to protect and best serve our customers.”

—Beth Hartnett

news@claremont-courier.com

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