Burglars looking for an easy break in are turning to homes being tented for termites, according to officials.
San Diego crime logs and personal stories from fumigators recently show a disturbing trend where more crooks are targeting the tented homes knowing the house will be vacant.
The latest investigation involves a house in Blossom Valley, east of El Cajon, where a homeowner showed up to get his mail and discovered a strange car in the driveway and clamps to the tent undone.
“He called police because he was worried, he was worried someone died inside” said Joanie Selby, the realtor selling the home.
Lucky for the homeowner, the house was heading into escrow, was empty and the person didn’t try to break in past the tent.
“Yeah it’s been a problem for a little while” said James Cantin, a fumigator for Megafume Inc. “Throughout the year it’s countless."
Cantin and his crew were back at the house pumping more gas into the tent after clamps were undone in two areas. The gas, Sulfuryl Fluoride, is designed to kill any living thing inside the house, which can include humans if they get inside without proper safety gear.
“If it’s high enough, it’s gonna kill you," said Cantin. "These guys that break in have gotten lucky to where they haven’t been in long enough."