WORCESTER (CBS) — A family that had several items stolen from their home while they slept are the latest Worcester residents to endure a rash of burglaries in the city, police and witnesses said.

Michael and Kelly Ortiz were home sleeping with their three teenage children at The Royal Worcester Apartments on Thursday night when someone cut a screen window and broke into their unit. A television, game console and cash were stolen while the family slept, Michael Ortiz told CBS.

“They cut the screen, came in and took out the TV and PlayStation, and walked right out the door,” Michael Ortiz said.

Worcester authorities say burglaries are on the rise as well as people breaking into cars targeting GPS systems and other electronics. “They broke my passenger side window twice and stole the radio,” Worcester resident Jennifer Francois said.

Folks who live in The Royal Worcester Apartments said they want to start their own neighborhood crime watch.

Police said they have made some arrests in recent burglaries, but they are warning residents to be cautious and take precautions.

Over the first four months of 2013, residential and commercial break-ins have increased 9.7 percent over the same time period last year, Worcester Police reported in a prepared statement Friday. More than 530 motor vehicle break-ins were reported in Worcester from Jan. 1 through May 1, which represents a 17 increase over the same time period last year, police said.

To report crimes, Worcester residents and businesses can send an anonymous text to 274637 TIPWPD plus a message or send an anonymous Web-based message at worcesterma.gov/police. Calls can also be made to the Worcester Police Detective Bureau at 508-799-8651.

WBZ-TV’s Paul Burton contributed to this report.


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