CS1: Remember to Lock Your Door: Advice from your locksmith

CS1:  Remember to Lock Your Door:  Advice from your locksmith

This series of common sense articles walk you through ideas in security that should be universally accepted but crime statistics tell us are far from common.

Locksmiths offer answers to questions raised by crime. We are there whenever you need us to fix your lock, change your key or let you in when you lock yourself out. Now I feel it is time to speak up. Common security sense has been lost and people are making it easy for burglars.

Burglars are not a hard-working bunch. They look to make an easy score. It is commonly believed, among security professionals, that burglars would make more money per hour working at a minimum wage job. If only they wanted to work that hard.

The laziest of burglars will walk around looking for an unlocked door. Houses during the day – businesses at night. When he finds an unlocked door he enters and looks for money, tools, jewelery and electronics. Anything that can be sold for a quick buck.

There is an easy way to put these burglars out of business: Lock your doors and windows.

This message is repeated on TV news programs, by your local police department, by your mother and by me, your local locksmith.

How can I help you?

Well I am writing this article to remind you again to lock your doors and windows. When I do security audits I remind you to lock your doors and windows. Still almost half of break and enters occur through an open door (or window) or with a key.

A lock is the most dependable machine you will ever buy. From a 50 cent sash lock on your window to the four hundred-dollar deadbolt lock on your front door, you will rarely need to call in a professional to service a lock. You just have to remember to use it.

The truth is that locks are taken for granted. Because they don’t break down and because if you do forget to use a lock there is usually no issue.

Until the lazy burglar finds you.

Know Your Burglar
How many burglars are there in Toronto? In 2008 Toronto Police arrested 1,651 burglars. There were 12,971 break and enters reported in that same year (Source: 2008 TPS STATISTICAL REPORT). Who are these people? They are people like Ross Stevens, nicknamed the Burglar King was charged with 38 counts of break and entering in Bloor and Spadina neighbourhoods.

People like {name removed by request} 45, who was arrested on May 9, 2010 and charged with 50 break-ins in Mississauga. He used ladders he found lying around to break into second floor windows. This is why we tell our customers to lock up your ladders. A small chain and a padlock is all it takes to slowdown, or even stop, a burglar.


People like Kryzystzof HARASIUK, 39, who stole from a house on Strathallan Blvd in Toronto then returned to steal again and was caught by Toronto’s Finest.

People like Jean-Pierre GAGNE, 30 from Toronto who broke into a home while the owners were on vacation and was caught trying to sell the stolen property at a pawn shop on Queen Street.

What Can You Do?
Every burglar has a different M.O. (method of operation or Modus Operandi) Ali Hussein Abu-Khalil liked to use ladders to gain entrance to the second floor of a house. Kryzystozof Harasiuk entered through the patio door and Jean-Pierre Gagne broke a window to enter his victims house.

When I do a security audit I look for the easiest way to enter a home or business. You can do this too. Walk around your house or office and look at ways you can enter without a key. Then take that option away from the burglar. This is a tactic called target hardening. I have many tools in my arsenal to help make your home more difficult to break into.

The front door is most often the point of entry for a burglar. That is why I recommend a good quality deadbolt on all exterior door especially the front door.

Windows should be protected with steel security bars and alarm contacts. This would have kept Jean-Pierre Gagne out of his victim’s house.

Patio doors are very difficult to secure properly. What little we can do is very inexpensive and force the burglar to break the glass to get into your house. A Charlie Bar is $30 and some screws in the top track of your patio door frame will prevent the door from being lifted. And of course an alarm contact.

Many of the burglars caught by the police were detected by a burglar alarm system. Even though the burglar still managed to steal from their victim they took less than they would have if there were no alarm system and the police attended quickly enough to catch them.

Report all break-ins right away, even if nothing was taken. The police can’t be proactive, they must react to your call. Police budget is based on the number of calls that come in. Don’t let your burglar get away with his crime.

Spadina Security Incorporated is dedicated to getting the right information in your hands to protect what you value, protect what you love. Our website has many resources including factshets, datasheets and articles like this one, and links to external resources like the TPS statistics, the Toronto Star’s crime map by neighbourhood and Discovery Channel’s “To Catch A Thief”.

Visit www.SpadinaSecurity.com

12,971 Break and Enters Total in 2008 1,651 burglars arrested in 2008 Source: 2008 TPS STATISTICAL REPORT Ross Stevens nicknamed the Burglar King was charged with 38 counts of break and entering in Bloor and Spadina neighbourhoods. Ali Hussein Abu-Khalil, 45, was arrested on May 9, 2010 and charged with 50 break-ins in Mississauga.

CS1: Remember to lock your door
I) 50% of B&E in Toronto have no signs of how the burglar entered
II) Lock your doors and windows

B & E BANDIT ARRESTED Ross Stevens the Burglar King
Between the months of June and September, police have been investigating a number of break and enters in the area of Spadina Avenue and Bloor Street West on the boundary of 14 Division and 53 Division.
On Tuesday September 1st at 2:00 pm a suspect was arrested after breaking into two homes in this area.

After an investigation between 14 & 53 Divisions Major Crime Units, it was revealed that the suspect was responsible for the numerous break ins in these two Divisions.
Charged with 42 counts of break & enter, 2 counts of possession of property obtained by crime, possession of burglars tools and attempt break & enter is Ross STEVENS, 47 years of Toronto. He was held for a show cause hearing at the Old City Hall Courts to answer to the charges.

Break & Enter in 53 Division: Kryzystzof Harasiuk
Community Bulletin, Oct 2009

On Saturday September 5th, the complainant who was out of the city, received a phone call at about 6:00 am from his alarm company, advising that the alarm had gone off at the house located on Strathallan Blvd. The complainant had a friend check the house. It was then discovered that an entry had occurred via the rear patio door.
While inside the suspect pulled curtains on the windows of the basement and two upper floors. Numerous closets and rooms were ransacked on all three levels. The suspect then removed two large flat screen television sets, jewellery, computer equipment, a spare key for an Audi and a spare key for a 2007 Porche 911 Carrera. The suspect loaded the property into the Audi and fled the scene.

On Sunday September 13th, the complainant heard the alarm for her husbands Porche going off in the driveway. She looked outside and observed the suspect standing in the driveway with what appeared to be a key for the vehicle in his hand.

The suspect saw the complainant and fled the scene on foot. The complainant ran to get her cell phone and called 911. Police attended located the suspect a short distance away. A foot pursuit ensued as the suspect ran through backyards. The suspect eluded Police until he was located hiding on a garage roof at the rear of an address on Avenue Road. The suspect jumped from the roof in an attempt to flee but was arrested.

He was transported to 53 Division for further investigation. Charged with break & enter, attempt theft over $5000.00 and assault to resist arrest is Kryzystzof HARASIUK, 39 years of Hamilton. He was held for a show cause hearing at College Park Courts to answer to the charges.

Break & Enter: Jean-Pierre Gagne
Sometime between Sunday August 23rd and Monday, August 24th, the suspect attended a residential address on Chestnut Park. The owners were out of the country and had one of their relatives checking in on their property.
The suspect used an unknown instrument to break a ground floor window. The suspect entered the residence and search the house, removing an Apple Macbook Pro from the kitchen counter, a Toshiba laptop from a bedroom, a Canon Digital SLR camera with Sigma lens and a Sony Handicam and left the residence.
On Monday, August 25th, plainclothes officers from the 51 Division Major Crime Unit
attended a Second Hand Shop on Queen Street to collect Pawn Sheets from the business.
As police entered the store the suspect, who was at the counter with the store owner conducting a transaction, abruptly left the store, leaving a quantity of property on the counter. Officers investigated the property left behind by the suspect and determined it to be stolen from a break and enter on Chestnut Park.
The suspect was eventually identified and on Wednesday September 2nd, the suspect was located and arrested and transported to 53 Division.
Charged with break & enter and possession of property obtained by crime over $5000. is Jean-Pierre GAGNE, 30 years of Toronto. He was held for a show cause hearing at College Park Courts to answer to the charges.

Source: TPS Community Bulletin

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