Steamboat Springs ack Tail Estates subdivision in South Routt County has police officers warning residents about the importance of locking doors and being aware of suspicious activity.
Three homes in the subdivision were broken into Wednesday, said Routt County Sheriff sergeant Ray Birch. Birch said a homeowner in the 28000 block of Valley View Lane returned home at about 9 p.m. Wednesday to find his home had been burglarized. None of the victims was home at the time of the suspected break-ins.
Officers think the burglar walked to a fourth house but not did break into it. The subdivision is near Routt County Road 14 and C.R. 200, southeast of Yellow Jacket Pass.
Birch said that after the first homeowner called the Sheriff's Office to report the burglary, officers discovered that two other homes had been broken into between 2 and 6 p.m. Wednesday.
Each of the homes was forcibly entered, Birch said, and the burglar appears to have escaped with several thousand dollars worth of household and personal items.
Investigating officers followed a line of footprints that connected each of the homes, leading officers to think the burglar did not return to a car between break-ins.
"It was a very distinct pattern of sole imprints in the snow. They appeared to come from a single individual. The prints made one big loop," Birch said.
Because the burglaries are under investigation, Birch would not comment about potential suspects, but he said it is "theoretically possible the person came from and went into a house in the subdivision."
Officers were on scene until about 4 a.m. Thursday before losing the tracks.
"I want people in that area to be aware of the rash of burglaries. People need to make sure their homes are locked and that they maintain communication with their neighbors," Birch said.
Birch asked residents to report any suspicious activity, people or cars.
"Be on the lookout for anyone suspicious, especially people who are out walking in this kind of weather who don't belong," he said.
Anyone with information is urged to call the Routt County Sheriff's Office at 870-5504.