Associated Press - April 15, 2009 10:04 AM ET
JACKSON, Mo. (AP) - For months, police in the neighboring southeast Missouri towns of Cape Girardeau and Jackson have been puzzled by a series of break-ins where the thieves stole jewelry. Now, they may have their first solid lead.
Jackson police have released a composite sketch of a suspect, after a resident surprised a burglar on Friday. The suspect took jewelry and got away in a small red car.
Since last fall, police have been investigating a string of burglaries with a similar pattern. The break-ins occur soon after victims have left their homes, with a rock or other object used to break through a window or door. The thieves concentrate on jewelry and sometimes steal cash.
Cape Girardeau police have recorded more than 50 burglaries that fit the pattern, Jackson 10 to 15.