Ashland hit with unprecedented amount of burglaries - WQOW TV: Eau Claire, WI NEWS18 News, Weather, and Sports

Burglaries rise 800% in small Wisconsin town

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ASHLAND (KBJR) -- It's been a tough few weeks for the typically quiet city of Ashland.

"There's a huge amount of fear, people are locking their doors, and, and they're telling people, 'I can't believe you left your door open', and that's not normal for Ashland," said Ashland Police Chief Gregoire.

Gregoire says in a normal six-week period, police would respond to about five burglaries - but since late April, they've responded to nearly 40. 

"I'm assuming it has something to do with drugs, and the need to get money for drugs," said Gregoire.

Gregoire said the burglars take anything from whatever loose change they can find, to well over a hundred dollars in some cases.

Primarily they walk the city, looking for unlocked car doors, and entering unsuspecting peoples homes.

Gregoire said, "The suspects have gone into their house, they've opened drawers, opened bathroom cabinets, taken prescription medications, taken change jars."

Gregoire is urging residents to keep their vehicles and homes locked up, as the burglars are going to great lengths to get what they want. 

"They're slipping the locks on garage doors, or prying the garage doors open, and once they get into the garage, they get into the cars." Said Gregoire.

With the community on edge, the department is pulling out all the stops to catch the crooks. 

Gregoire said, "we have officers coming in on overtime, volunteering to come in, and sometimes using their own personal vehicles. They're walking the alleys, they're walking the streets at night. We're trying to get them, it's an all out effort."

Police believe several people may be involved in this burglaries and need your help finding them.

In addition to keeping things locked up, Ashland Police are urging neighbors to look out for one another, and report anything that appears suspicious. 

If anyone has any information who could be behind the burglaries, they are asked to call 911. 

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