Burglary Caught on Tape
By: CJ Cassidy
CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO --A home security system proves useful for the second time in three months. Police say not only was a burglary caught on tape, it also pointed them right to the suspect.
How would you feel if you saw someone break into your home?
Pat LaFont and his wife saw it happen not once, but twice.
Surveillance video shows three masked men trying to break into the LaFont home in the dead of night, back in April.
Last week, the same cameras caught another crook on tape, breaking into the home in broad daylight; and here's the kicker: he made sure the couple was away first.
"This guy doing some work for us called and asked us where I was, and I made the mistake of letting him know I was out of town, and wouldn't be in for a few hours. Then he called later left me a voice mail saying he had spotted a vehicle around my property, but that I shouldn't worry," LaFont says.
When the couple returned home, they were in for a shock.
"It just shows you how hard he worked to get into one area of the house," LaFont says, pointing to a door he says was beaten down with a sledgehammer.
But thanks to their cameras, the LaFonts were able to point to this man, Chad Peltz as the alleged intruder.
"We caught him breaking into the house; breaking the lock and all that," La Font says.
"It's technology we're likely to see more of, as cameras get cheaper, and it definitely does help us if they get a good image of the suspect," Jason Selzer with the Cape Girardeau Police Department says.
"He looked right at the camera and didn't realize it," LaFont says.
Now, after two terrifying ordeals in three months, the couple says their investment in the somewhat candid cameras, have them smiling big.
"You don't want to be a prisoner in your own home," LaFont says.
LaFont claims Chad Peltz took three guns he kept locked away in a safe.
Peltz faces burglary and stealing charges and is being held in the Cape County Jail on $10,000 bond.
So what can you do to protect your home when you're away?
Police say ask your neighbors to keep an eye on the place for you.
They also suggest investing in an alarm system or lights that automatically turn on at dusk, to give the illusion you could be at home.
Another tip, ask your local post office and newspaper delivery service to hold your mail and papers until you return.
Most police departments also perform vacation checks, for you if you request it.
Simply go by your local police or sheriff's department, and fill out a form that lets officers know how long you plan on being away.
Patrol officers will then check on your home from time to time to make sure nothing looks out of place.
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