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Businesses, homes burglarized as crooks take advantage of power outage

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Crime is always a concern for many people in Memphis and with so many people still left without power, safety is an even bigger concern.

Crooks have taken advantage of the situation.

One of the businesses targeted by thieves is Joe’s Liquor Store on Poplar Avenue.

Instead of advertisements in the front window, customers are now greeted with plywood.

Police said thieves shattered the glass around 10 a.m. Sunday while the power was still out and got away with $800 worth of wine.

A convenience store on Chelsea was also hit.

Police said there the burglars got away with cash, nearly $5,000 worth of cigarettes and over $7,000 worth of lottery tickets.

To make matters worse, no power means there were no working surveillance cameras.

But it’s not just businesses who have had to keep their guard up.

WREG spoke with one person who lives in Binghampton and she said she’s heard about individuals being targeted as well.

“It`s very sad. There`s a lot that`s been going on, stores being broken into, houses, all types of things.”

Police said two homes about a mile and a half from each other both had their back doors kicked in.

In those cases the suspects took off with televisions and Xbox’s.

To prevent more crimes, Memphis police said they are increasing patrols in neighborhoods still without power.

But there are some things you can do to protect your home.

Excite Home Security recommended having a backup source of light when your power goes out.

A dark house is attractive to crooks as it makes it easier for them to break into your home without anyone noticing.

Homeowners can also put up defenses that are not electrical based such as a door or pole propped up against the doors. You can also install door chains and deadbolts to exterior entrances.

For those who do have a security system already installed, be sure to talk to your security provider. Some landline systems will continue to operate even when the power is out.

Other systems have the ability to use battery power for several hours, meaning it will still work without electricity.