Thursday, May 5, 2011

A reader reminder about fire-escape windows

An email from a reader...

We were burglarized Friday night at our home on East Second Street and Avenue A by someone crawling through our fire escape window. They unlocked our security fire gate and came in. The worst part was, we were home. They emptied my purses, rummaged through things. Got off with cash, a camera and jewelry. Left our front door open as they escaped. Luckily we slept through it, but it was creepy.

And was her window open?

Our window was open a smidgen — like 2 inches. The gate was closed and locked. They must have had a very slim arm to reach inside and open it. Not to mention being really agile to climb in in complete silence. There were three of us there sleeping and nobody heard a thing.

18 comments:

Anonymous said...

what floor do they live on? I never keep my window open next to the fire escape unless it's the middle of the day and I'm near it.

Megan said...

Perhaps they came in through the door and left through the fire escape..

Anonymous said...

there was a gate on the window? or a fire escape? trying to picture this because its a huge fear of mine

Ken from Ken's Kitchen said...

Ask a cop. Burglars who rob empty apts are one thing, but the ones who burgle apts where people are home are really dangerous. This is not good news.

Kurt said...

Someone had an arm thin enough to slip through a security gate? A security gate that even a child can slip their arm through isn't much of a security gate.

Marty Wombacher said...

I've never trusted slim-armed people and now my fears are justified! You can't even handcuff these people. Sheesh!

Anonymous said...

I thought the gates are supposed to be designed so one cannot slip one's arm through them to unlock them. What kind of gate was it? Any further description? I paid quite a bit to have supposedly burglar-proof gates installed on my fire escape windows, and now I am concerned....The gaps between the bars on these gates are so small though that only a kitten could put a paw through them.

An older apartment of mine was burglarized while I was home. No security gates, no fire escape, but it was a second floor on a building with a front porch. Someone climbed onto the roof of the porch and got in. It was a team effort, as they cleared out all the electronics in my living room in the minutes I was there. I walked in on one who pulled a gun then thought better of it and jumped out the window, and a van sped off. Apparently they were hitting multiple spots in the neighborhood, and were eventually caught. Their fatal mistake was breaking into the neighbor's house. The neighbor was a police officer. With a nasty german shepherd guard dog.

Anonymous said...

My gate has a big fan-shaped metal panel around the lock that covers half the lower gate...you'd need an arm like an orangutan to get around it. This is scary news...

Marty Wombacher said...

"only a kitten could put a paw through them."

I've never been a snitch, but this comment made me wonder if the slim-armed thief is Roger_Paw?

Roger_Paw said...

Marty, I can't tell you anything in confidence obviously! Yes, in my early twenties I enjoyed a brief stint as a cat burgler when I lived in the Dyker Heights/Bath Beach area of Brooklyn. Local penny savers ran stories calling me the Verrazano Vixen due to the houses' proximity to the bridge.

Dan said...

wow, i live on 2nd and A and have also worried about this.

im on the top floor (5th). our building is pretty secure, lots of cameras throughout. the roof door is alarmed and is always shut.

The windows have no security gates. But my fire escape window faces the street. was this person's in the back are front?

are there any rules governing this, or is it my responsibility to put in a security gate if i want it? No one else has one and most of these people have been here 20 or 30 years...

Jeremy said...

I'm sure they have tools to do this.

With that said, my fire gate is hard enough to open from the inside - I can't imagine opening it from the outside with some makeshift tool.

Jeremiah Moss said...

i'd also like to know how this was done. my gate has a covered latch on top of a wide metal plate. you have to lift the cover, then the latch, which is kind of heavy, then slide the gate with your other hand simultaneously.

kitten, orangutan, makeshift tool--am i fooling myself that none of these could open such a gate???

Anonymous said...

What about the lock you put on the gate latch? The economy is pretty bad right now. Maybe people should consider doorman buildings, perhaps Wall street area? Glass buildings are hard to climb. Or not, up to you. I've heard the new buildings are really safe, plus they have gyms and pools! Same rent too!

Anonymous said...

Anyone caught trying to burgle my apartment while I'm home is getting a rusty sand wedge embedded in his skull.

Leesy said...

Rusty sand wedge? Enough said.

Kimberley said...

FORE!

Anonymous said...

More crime, please. Anything to drive the annoying college students away from east of 1st.