WILMETTE, Ill. (FOX 32 News) - Police in north suburban Wilmette are looking for a group of people they believe are responsible for nearly two dozen car break-ins.
Surveillance video captured by a resident shows a group of people running past vehicles early Friday morning, which is when police say the crimes happened.
The group is seen on the video being followed by a car trailing them as police say the group was testing car doors to see which were unlocked,
Police responded to the 700 block of Lacrosse Ave for an auto burglary in progress at about 4: 50 a.m., they said. As police units arrived, three vehicles fled.
One of the vehicles, seen in the surveillance video, was found abandoned in Skokie at the intersection of Oakton Ave. and Skokie Blvd, and was discovered to have been stolen from Indiana.
Investigators found 22 unlocked cars had been burglarized across several blocks. Three men’s suits were taken from one and a pair of house keys from another, they said.
A vehicle in the 700 block of Lamon Ave. was stolen, according to police, after they said the key fob was left inside.
The car was later recovered in the 5500 block of S. Racine Avenue in Chicago, according to Chicago Police.
A woman who lives in the area found the situation unsettling as she imagined if the burglars “weren't checking cars but going house to house” instead.
Her husband said he was up early and went outside after noticing something odd on his surveillance cameras. He said he saw someone rifling through a relatives car before he stepped inside and called police.
“I saw it wasn't my mother-in-law,” he said.
While the resident realized his actions likely saved his neighbors from more loss, his wife said the incidents should serve as a wake-up call.
“I've alerted all the neighbors,” she said. “You just want to make sure you're safe.”
Police did not have any suspects in custody Saturday night.
Police said they found another vehicle in Wilmette that they said was stolen from Lake County.
Police remind the public to always lock their cars and take the keys.