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Police thwart burglary-in-progress; Fort Myers man arrested

By Staff | Jun 3, 2009

Police officers responding to a burglary-in-progess last Wednesday morning apprehended a Fort Myers man in a Sanibel home.

The burglar entered through a sliding glass door that he broke out with a hammer, police said.

Sanibel officers apprehended Kristin Wesley Hughes, 36, inside the Long Point Lane home on May 27. He was was charged with burglary and resisting arrest.

According to Charlotte Harlow, the owner of the residence, the suspect had been seen wandering around the perimeter of her property. Harlow’s daughter Kristen called 9-1-1 immediately to report the incident.

“I heard a racket out my bedroom sliding door,” Harlow wrote via e-mail on Monday. “I looked out just in time to watch him break through my son’s sliding glass door (not window, as reported). Thank God my son had heard my daughter quietly making the 9-1-1 call and went to her room. I ran to confront him and was yelling at him and six Sanibel policemen came charging through my son’s now broken out sliding glass door – like the Cavalry – and took him down in my daughter’s doorway. Believe me, he did not look or act as harmless as his ‘mug shot’ would lead you to believe.”

Hughes also is a suspect in a burglary which was reported by a home watch caretaker at a residence on West Gulf Drive on May 26, official said. The home was accessed through the rear sliding glass door which had been broken out.

Harlow expressed her gratitude to the responding officers – Lt. Scott Ashby, Lt. Jaime Phillips, Det. Kurt Schulte, Sgt. Frank Crandon, Officer Kerry Griner and Officer John Jakubowski – as well as police dispatcher Morganna Beth, investigating Det. Mark Steele, Sgt. Dustin Worth and Chief of Police Bill Tomlinson.

“Words can never begin to express the gratitude my family and I have,” she added. “We can all rest assured that the Sanibel police force is up to any challenge despite our being a quiet, ‘Mayberry-like’ community.”

Although Sanibel is a safe community, residents and visitors should always report any suspicious activity immediately to the Sanibel Police Department.

“With help from the community, many crimes can be reduced or eliminated,” Tomlinson said in a prepared statement,.

The chief also issued the following crime prevention tips to Sanibel residents:

Lock all doors and windows

Engrave valuable household items with specific identification and video or photo

Keep bushes and trees trimmed

Never hide keys outside your home

Let a neighbor know when you are out of town and let them know who should and should not be at your home when you are gone

Install and maintain good lighting; use timers to turn lights on and off

Install deadbolt locks, solid doors, security hinges and striker plates

Secure glass sliding doors with pins

Look around as you approach your driveway

Close your overhead garage door before exiting your vehicle

Never open your door to a stranger. If they claim to be representing a business, call to verify that they do in fact work for that business. Have them produce identification

Make sure your alarm system is on when you are home, or away from home

Organize a neighborhood watch program, if there is not one in place

Contact Sanibel Police Department for dark house/vacation checks.

If you observe any suspicious activity at your home or your neighbor’s home, immediately contact the Sanibel Police Department at 472-3111.

Source; Sanibel Police Department