By Neil H. Dempsey
---- — SWAMPSCOTT — Police are investigating a wave of break-ins over the past couple weeks that saw $20,000 in Canadian cash stolen from a home on Puritan Road on Friday afternoon and two suspects chased off a porch on Burpee Road yesterday.
The two suspects in the Puritan Road breaks — described as young, clean-cut Hispanic men with thin builds — were seen carrying a television out of a house on Friday afternoon, according to a press release from Detective Sgt. Tim Cassidy.
At a second location in the same area, one of men approached a house and knocked on a door, Cassidy wrote. As a “diversion,” the man asked the resident who answered whether they “wanted a newspaper.”
Cassidy said he was “sure” that if no had answered, the two men would have broken into that residence. As it was, they pulled into the driveway just next door and “ransacked” the residence there.
“Taken in that break was a large amount of jewelry and $20,000 in Canadian cash ... mostly in $100 bills,” Cassidy wrote. The men also stole flat-screen televisions and computers.
Cassidy said that as the men left the house where somebody had answered the door, they backed into a wall, smashing the rear window of their vehicle, which was described as a 2004 gold-colored Nissan Pathfinder. Police found the broken window.
The two break-ins on Puritan Road occurred between 1 p.m. and 3:15 p.m.
Yesterday, a man at his mother-in-law’s Burpee Road address saw two men on her back porch and chased them into the woods and into the Jackson Park area, Cassidy said. An open house at the high school was delayed while police searched the area, but it later resumed. Officers were unable to locate the suspects.
Recent break-ins have also targeted residences on Cherry, Pine and Essex streets, in addition to Franklin Avenue, Cassidy said. Three residences on Elmwood Road were broken into last Thursday alone.
Cassidy said he believes two different groups of men were responsible for the string of residential break-ins over the past couple weeks.
Police encourage anybody who sees anything suspicious to contact detectives at 781-595-1111.