By Sarah Snyder
Over the past couple of months, burglaries have been at an all time high in Lamesa, and police tell us, upper and middle class neighborhoods have been hit the hardest.
"It's the most I remember," Lamesa Neighbor Paul Wade, said. "I think it's making people more aware and taking more precautions."
"We've had more and more crime in this area than our surrounding areas," Lt. Alex Contrera with the Lamesa Police Department, said.
It's a record number of car, home, and business theft.
"That's what we're having a problem with," Contrera said. "They're hitting us morning, noon, and night. In the past two months, we've had 35-40 burglaries which is a lot of burlaries for our area."
And nothing is off limits for these crooks, they've hit fast food restaurants, auto part shops, and even medical supply stores.
"People have been noticing there have been alot more burglaries both businesses and homes, and I think there's a concern about it," Wade said.
They're taking everything from appliances, to cigarettes, to jewelry and cash.
"It's so confusing because usually you have a burglar's method of operation and we don't have a pattern right now," Contrera said.
Detectives are investigating roofers who came to town after the hail storm.
"We have been told by people in the neighborhoods that they have caught roofers taking stuff," Contrera said.
But police believe most of the burglaries are from people in town.
"We're following some leads and we have quite a few people from our own community that are suspects," Contrera said.
And it hasn't been easy to deal with, Lamesa is having a hard time with the same problem as many other West Texas police departments.
"Manpower. We're having hard time keeping our streets covered," he said.
For the first time, they've assigned one of their deputies to deal with property crime full time.
"We as a police department don't have a neighborhood watch program," Lt. Contrera said. "We surely do need one."