Dozens of guns swiped in rural Durham County break-ins

BAHAMA, N.C. (WNCN) — At least 25 weapons, mostly rifles, are potentially on the streets of Durham County.

Thieves stole them from a home on Lowell Valley Drive in Bahama. Neighbors living in the area are surprised to find out thieves are targeting their homes.

RELATED: ‘Armed and dangerous’ Durham man wanted in connection with nearly 20 break-ins

“It’s very frightening,” said Beck Pratt of Bahama. “Because this is normally a really safe neighborhood, but lately we have not felt safe.”

The Durham County Sheriff’s Office says since May 1, 16 homes in northern and eastern Durham county have been broken into.

Investigators have not yet determined if the break-ins are connected.

Pratt has been living in Bahama for 25 years and says she’s never heard anything like this.

“I was really surprised,” she said. “We’ve never worried about people breaking in. It’s been very safe.”

The break-ins have neighbors making changes.

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“We lock our doors when we never really thought about it,” said Mary Ellen Alpaugh of Bahama. “I don’t even go out with my windows open anymore.”

Sheriff Mike Andrews says neighbors should be proactive about home security, and watch out for other neighbors, including suspicious activity.

“I had a neighbor at the end of my road had somebody pull into their driveway and when they went out to approach them, they hightailed it so it just makes you very suspicious of everybody, which is sad,” said Alpaugh.

While neighbors are doing what they can to protect themselves, they’re hoping the criminal or criminals are caught soon.

“So we can go back to our nice quiet life,” said Alpaugh.

The neighbors say they are going to create a community watch, which is a move recommended by the sheriff.

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