Oakland County, Mich. (Michigan News Source) – New burglaries of high end homes in Oakland County have prompted Oakland County Sheriff Michael Buchard to put out an alert.

“A couple days ago Sheriff Bouchard put out the alert that the high-end home burglars are back in Oakland County,” according to the Oakland Sheriff’s Office over the weekend. “They hit again last night. This story gives some of the background and what to look for. Again, call if you see something suspicious, use your alarm system and cameras if you have them.”

“They come here prepared.”

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In a press conference, Sheriff Bouchard shared what he believes about the groups targeting high end homes, “trained elsewhere.”

“They come here prepared, it’s very methodical,” Sheriff Bouchard said. “They come in teams with backpacks, each backpack has a different tool set. Some are the breaching tools, some are the electronics to jam alarm systems; very quick, sophisticated actions.”

Sheriff Reminds Community not to let its guard down, as more high end homes are attacked.

“We tend to let our guard down at certain points, you’ve got to up your game,” Bouchard said.

Sheriff Bouchard also recognized that a number of the homes that were robbed could have done things differently.

“A lot of these homes that have been hit, the alarm was off,” he said. “If you have an alarm, use it. Try to get your devices hardwired, try to have redundancy of communication so that you have a hardwired phone, you have an internet phone, you have a cellular phone, you have a radio, backup because again you don’t know what’s going to be jammed with their jamming system.”

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These groups are also visiting neighborhoods and homes ahead of time according to Sheriff Bouchard.

“They are doing a lot of [preoperational] surveillance,” he said. “Sometime or another, they are there before they hit, so if you see something, say something.”

High End Homes Hit Hard at the end of 2023.

Between September and early December there were more than 30 break-ins of mostly high end homes in Oakland County.

Sheriff Bouchard says, “In our area, they are targeting jewelry, precious metals, high-end items such as purses, electronics, currency, high-end watches, and if there’s a safe that’s not attached or they can either break into it on scene or carry it, they’ll do that.”

While many of the homes were expensive neighborhoods, not all of them were. Sheriff Bouchard previously warned about the manner of how the groups approached homes.

“They very often try to approach homes in a secluded manner – from woods, for example,” he said. “They’re looking for jewelry, cash, safes, even a larger safe. They’ll take that with them and try to brute-force it open later.”

Some arrests were made of Chilean transnational criminals robbing homes.

The Office of the Michigan Attorney General revealed that several Chilean nationals were charged for crimes committed in December 2023 associated with the high end burglaries:

– Jeremy Martinez, 19, Chilean National
One count of Conducting a Criminal Enterprise, a 20-year felony; and
Eight counts of Second-Degree Home Invasion, a 15-year felony.

– Ignacio Ruiz-Saldias, 29, Chilean National
One count of Conducting a Criminal Enterprise, a 20-year felony; and
Eight counts of Second-Degree Home Invasion, a 15-year felony.

– Tamara Ruiz-Saldias, 36, Chilean National
One count of Conducting a Criminal Enterprise, a 20-year felony; and
Eight counts of Second-Degree Home Invasion, a 15-year felony.

While the investigation remains ongoing, Michigan AG Dana Nessel shared her thoughts on the robberies.

“Home invasions don’t just threaten our property, they threaten our sense of security, and this ring has set entire communities on edge,” said Nessel. “I am proud of the hard work by not just those in my Department, but by our county and local law enforcement partners on this effort.”