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"City of Fishers" archway in Rotary Park

Source: (Photo: Eric Berman/WIBC)

HAMILTON COUNTY, Ind. — A group of burglars from South America have been targeting wealthy homes in Hamilton County. These are organized and sophisticated individuals from countries like Chile and Colombia who come to the United States to rob homes. They do surveillance on their target homes before stealing as much as they can in one robbery.

The police in Fishers and Carmel have investigated several of these burglaries. Carmel police investigated 3 in 2021, 10 in 2022, and 7 so far in 2023. Fishers police have also reported investigating several cases. The most recent robbery occurred on July 4, 2022, in Fishers, where two suspects were arrested for attempting to steal $25,000 worth of items from a house on Allister Drive.

An expert on security consulting, Paul Keenan, explained that these groups are highly organized and sophisticated. They first gained attention in Los Angeles in 2016 and were referred to as “Tourist Burglars” because they used a special visa program that allowed them to visit the United States as tourists.

The police have urged residents to take precautions and prepare themselves for potential burglaries. Fishers Police Department Sgt. Tom Weger encouraged neighbors to be aware of each other’s normal activities to help identify suspicious behavior. The police have also cautioned residents to be vigilant and report any unusual activities or people in their neighborhoods.

In one Carmel case, four suspects from Chile were arrested a few days after a home in a gated neighborhood off 106th Street was robbed. The suspects were found with stolen goods from the Carmel home. Court documents suggest that the suspects stole an estimated $250,000 worth of bags, jewelry, and other items.

The police have warned that these South American theft groups remain active and have called for continued vigilance to prevent further burglaries.