NEWTON (CBS) — Homeowners in Newton are on edge after a string of burglaries. Investigators are trying to figure out if the crimes are racially-motivated, as all five homes belong to families of Asian descent.
The suspect has robbed all of the homes disguised as someone looking for a lost pet.
“Scared. Upset. Not quite sure exactly what to do,” said homeowner Andre Luke.
The victims have been losing anything from money and jewelry to handbags. Doorbell cameras have been getting a good look at the suspect, who is dressed in a hat, mask and backpack with a missing pet flyer in hand.
Newton Police say it is too soon to say if these families were targeted, but they are increasing patrols while they investigate.
“All of the breaks have occurred during the day. On weekends and the victims in all of the housebreaks have been Asian,” said Newton Police Chief John Carmichael.
Police are asking the public to help identify the man.
“We’re hoping someone will see this individual, recognize him and they’ll give us a call,” said Newton Police Lieutenant Bruce Apotheker.
The DA adding that it is very unlikely that all five homes would just happen to be Asian families in a diverse city like Newton.
While there are no firm answers yet, there is concern.
Police, along with the Mayor, will hold a community meeting on Thursday via Zoom.