HOLLAND TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WOOD) — The Ottawa County Sheriff’s Office is investigating a string of break-ins at the homes of Chinese restaurant owners in Holland Township.
Deputies say the first break-in happened at a home in October, two more break-ins over the Thanksgiving Holiday, and the last break-in happened over this past weekend at a home near Huizenga Avenue and 104th Avenue. Detectives say all the burglaries were very similar which leads them to believe they are connected.
“All of these victims owned restaurants that served Chinese cuisine. They were all gone working at the family restaurant at the time of the break-in, never anybody in the home during any of these and they targeted the same items: cash, jewelry, sometimes clothes, purses, things like that,” Capt. Jake Sparks with the Ottawa County Sheriff’s Office said.
Sparks says the group of thieves got away with several hundred thousand dollars’ worth of stuff. The sheriff’s office did not disclose which restaurant owners’ homes were targeted for safety reasons.
Police say targeted break-ins like these are abnormal for the area. They say they don’t believe the suspect and victims know each other and don’t believe they were targeted due to their race.
“I think that they’re targeted because they’re not home, they’re gone away from their home for long periods of time. Additionally, because of some of the finances available to them,” Sparks said.
Police say they are still looking for whoever is responsible. They’re warning other business owners and homeowners to be alert and invest in home security systems.
“Be aware of your situation. If there’s a vehicle that doesn’t fit in your neighborhood or you see someone walking from a parked vehicle to a home that you know isn’t the neighbor’s home, please contact 911,” Sparks said.
Anyone with information is asked to call the Ottawa County Sheriff’s Office at 616.738.4000 or Silent Observer at 877.887.4536.