Recent home break-in leaves a Vancouver family rattled

Even though break-and-enters in Vancouver are down overall this year, a woman who had a home break-in last month in the Fairview neighbourhood says she doesn't feel reassured -- and is moving her family away. Kier Junos reports.

A recent home break-in has left a Vancouver family in the Fairview neighbourhood rattled.

Alice Lin, came home from a dinner with her family only to find someone got into their home before them.

The intruder smashed through their door and left pieces of the lock and splinters strewn on the floor.

The frame of the door is left with deep splinters. (Credit: Alice Lin)

“I can’t even imagine if we were home at the time how scary that would have been, just the violence of it all,” she told CityNews.

Lin has put a plate on her front door, but there’s a big crack on the door frame, where the person got in, presumably with a strong crowbar.

“Our handle doesn’t work right now, but only this deadbolt is holding our door closed,” she said while showing CityNews the damage on her front door.

This deadbolt is holding Lin's front door together right now.
This deadbolt is holding Lin’s front door together right now. (CityNews Image)

Lin says the intruder stole some jewellery and cameras, but she says that’s nothing compared to how the incident has affected her family deeply, and they have chosen to leave the home for a while.

“This has been a very traumatic event for my husband, myself and my son – and even for our cats. So we’ve had to move out. It’s been a huge toll on our family to have to move all five of us out, just so we can be away for a little bit,” she said.

Break-and-enter data from the Vancouver Police Department (VPD) says that reports of home break-ins across the city have decreased overall in the first three months of this year, compared to last year.

In Fairview – they’re down by one compared to last year.

Reports did go up by 13 in Renfrew-Collingwood – up by nine in Marpole – and up by seven in both Shaughnessy and Downtown.

Sgt. Steve Addison, Media Relations Officer at VPD, says as the weather gets warmer, he encourages people to be careful.

“We encourage people to take precautions to safeguard themselves from property crime – that includes locking doors, making sure that you’re not leaving windows open when you’re not home, and taking basic precautions to prevent thieves from gaining entry to your house,” he said.

However, Lin had taken the basic precautions — she locked her front door and closed her windows.

Alice Lin shows CityNews where the intruder broke-in from.
Alice Lin shows CityNews where the intruder broke into her home. (CityNews Image)

Lin told CityNews, an officer who took on her case initially offered her a walkthrough of her place. She declined the walkthrough, initially, because she was still very rattled by the incident, but later the walkthrough never happened.

“The next day he emailed me back, essentially insinuating that he wasn’t going to do a walkthrough, and gave me a list of tips, and kind of signed it off with best of luck, so that was really disappointing, to say the least,” Lin said.

The police say it is always worth reporting a break-in.

“Often it’s a small number of thieves committing a number of break-ins, and one person can do a lot of damage and commit a lot of crimes – if we don’t hear about it, we can’t investigate it,” Addison said.

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