An alert neighbor yelled out, and the thief scampered away.

A detached garage was the target for this criminal looking for an easy midday score. The crook made off with Bruce Turrill’s air compressor, speed buffer and other electric tools. Unfortunately, he says, the garage had been left unlocked.

“I’ve got a boat in the garage and can’t put the door all the way down,” he says. “The police said these guys are professionals, and they do this for a living. Shame on me. You never think this is going to happen to you, but it does.”

Luckily for Turrill, a neighbor saw the burglar and yelled at him. The man fled, but not before the neighbor jotted down his license plate number. A local pawnshop later contacted police about some suspicious merchandise and Turrill’s property was returned. Police also were able to arrest the burglars.

“I feel very fortunate,” Turrill says. “Your best home protection is to know your neighbor.”

He now keeps the boat somewhere else — and the garage locked at all times.

Dalas Police Lt. Gloria Perez with the Northeast Patrol Division says garage doors should always be closed, unless you are in the garage working.

“Entry into a home is very easy with an open garage,” she says. “I personally always keep the garage door closed, even when I am doing yard work, and I put an extra garage door opener in my pocket.

“If you must keep a boat or other outdoor recreation vehicle at home, try to park it under a light, and if possible with a covering of some sort on the vehicle.”

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