Atherton considers installing license-plate readers | March 20, 2019 | Almanac | Almanac Online |


News - March 20, 2019

Atherton considers installing license-plate readers

Two more home burglaries reported in town

by Angela Swartz

In response to a rash of burglaries in town, the Atherton Police Department will ask the City Council at its meeting on Wednesday, March 20, to direct staff to study installing license-plate readers around town to "detect, solve, prevent and deter" crime, according to a staff report.

The crime spree dates back to late 2018. There have been eight residential burglaries in Atherton so far this year. About $2 million worth of goods were reported stolen in the first four incidents of 2019, police said.

The topic of potentially installing public-safety cameras in town came up at a January meeting on the home burglary spree, City Manager George Rodericks said in an email this week.

Menlo Park and Portola Valley are among local jurisdictions that have installed surveillance systems that record license plates.

In the most recent incidents in Atherton, two residential burglaries were reported between March 8 and 17, according to a Police Department press release.

On Monday, March 11, a resident of the unit block of Deodora Drive reported to police that someone had broken a window in the rear of the resident's home and burglarized the house between March 8 and 11. There is no estimate on losses, police Sgt. Anthony Kockler said. Officers are investigating the incident.

Between Friday, March 15, and Sunday, March 17, someone shattered a rear window of a home on Mulberry Lane and stole a safe from inside the house, police said. The preliminary estimated loss is $200, police Sgt. David Gomez said. That amount could change since officers are still investigating the incident, he said. It's unknown at this time whether this incident is related to other residential burglaries in town over the last several months.

Police Chief Steven McCulley said on March 12 that the culprits hitting homes in Atherton may be the same people who are burglarizing residences "up and down the Peninsula."


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