Couple thinks Florida pics led burglar to them

Posted at 7:14 PM, Jan 05, 2016
and last updated 2016-01-05 19:14:48-05

MIDDLETOWN, Ohio -- A couple returning from Florida found their home had been ransacked, and they said they think Facebook may have led the burglar straight to them.

Surveillance cameras captured the intruder, the couple said. A shot from their living room shows him enter, spot the camera, hide his face and then try to disconnect or turn the camera.

WCPO is declining to identify the couple, because they expressed concerns for their safety.

"I feel scared to even come home," the woman said. "I don't want to be here alone at all. You know, it's sad how people -- I check behind the shower curtain, I take that seriously now just because that happened."

Another shot shows the man inside their bedroom before he ransacked it. The woman said that's the worst, because he had what appeared to be a gun.

"To sit there and see a guy come through your house and violate your privacy and touch your things and be in the same room that you lay your head at night -- that's a really scary feeling," she said.

The couple has security cameras both inside and outside the home; a line appears to have been cut to a camera on the home's rear.

They believe the intruder got in through a back door to their garage, manipulating the lock with a knife or some other tool. The couple also think he arrived at the home on foot, because some items, such as electronics and Christmas presents, were left behind.

While the couple was in Florida, they posted pictures of their trip -- and they think that's how the intruder may have know they were gone. Police often remind the public that smart criminals use social media to know if someone is away on vacation.

To protect yourself, you can take the following steps:

  • Log into Facebook and go to Settings; select Privacy and make sure only Friends can see your future posts.
  • Don't post vacation photos until you've returned home.