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Extra patrolling in Winslow after recent burglaries

A string of burglaries in downtown Winslow over the past two months has prompted tightened security in the area.

In the month of August, two businesses on Winslow Way experienced burglaries and workers at a third business found evidence of an attempted burglary. And in late July, the Waterfront Park Community Center was also ransacked.

Police are still gathering clues.

“We have deadbolts,” said Dave Manning, owner of Bainbridge Homes Real Estate. “It’s possible that one of the deadbolts was undone, and it’s possible that someone had a key.”

Employees at Bainbridge Homes arrived at work the Tuesday morning after Labor Day weekend to find six computer monitors, two iPads, an external hard drive and their large flat-panel TV monitor stolen.

“They took all the monitors they could,” Manning said.

Since the real estate office was open for business on Labor Day, Manning explained, the burglary occurred some time between closing time that Monday and opening on Tuesday morning. He estimated that less than $5,000 of property was stolen.

“Other than feeling violated and obviously disrupting our business, it wasn’t a catastrophic loss,” Manning made clear.

Bainbridge Homes Real Estate also serves as an annex for Roby King Galleries and a First Friday Art Walk location. Manning said that none of the artwork on the walls were stolen, which leads him to believe that most of the items sought after were chosen for how well they could be pawned.

He also said that some of the items stolen were later found locally, though he could not offer details of the recovery since the burglary is still under investigation.

In addition to the incident at Bainbridge Homes, according to a Bainbridge Island police report, management at Bainbridge Chiropractic Center discovered evidence of a failed attempt of burglary. On Aug. 27, pry marks and damage to the weather stripping on the front door of the business were found.

A third occurrence of burglary was also made earlier in August at a Winslow Way business, of which the owner requested no information be published to prevent additional hurtful impacts to his business.

The three incidents follow a July 29 break-in at the Waterfront Park Community Center where a flat-screen TV and several computers were stolen from the senior center portion of the building. In response to the robbery, a $1,000 donation was made to the senior center to help replace the stolen items, and the city has plans to install a burglar alarm.

Executive director of the Bainbridge Island Downtown Association, Andie Mackin, contacted Bainbridge police this week regarding the occurrences.

Police notified Mackin that they have increased patrolling downtown, but also shared some basic tips on how to better ensure security.

Precautions such as keeping the storefront well-lit and making bank deposits in groups rather than alone are practices business owners should remember, Mackin was told.

“We all get welded into that sense of security; this is a small town,” Mackin said. “If everyone keeps an eye out for each other, it really reduces the chance of more happening.”

Mackin has arranged to include a discussion on downtown security at the next merchant meeting.

Bainbridge officers will be present to answer questions and offer guidance at the session which will take place in the auditorium at the Bainbridge Island Museum of Art from 8:30 to 10 a.m. Tuesday, Sept. 10.

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