JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - A Northside neighborhood was on high alert Monday night after a home invasion led to a massive search for the culprits.
Kecia and Troy Williams got a call from a neighbor saying that their home in Biscayne Estates, off Biscayne Boulevard, was being burglarized.
“He said, ‘Get home. A couple of guys -- not a couple of guys, five guys, just kicked in your front door,’” Kecia Williams said.
The burglars were arrested, but much of the neighborhood was swarmed by law enforcement during the search.
After having her door kicked in by burglars, Kecia Williams had a message for her neighbors.
“(If) you see somebody hanging out on the corner of your street, don't just ride by, ask them what they're doing or call the police or find out who their parents are,” Williams said.
Troy Williams said he was glad they weren't home when their neighbors called warned them of the break-in. He told News4Jax he was just getting home when police were arresting one of the burglars.
“As soon as I got to the entrance, I saw cops had it blocked off,” Troy Williams said. “Then I came back when I got to the house and parked. I saw cops bringing one of the young men out in handcuffs.”
The Williams family said police blocked off the neighborhood while they searched for the five teenage burglars. The couple said the teens attempted to steal over $5,000 of their belongings.
News4Jax spoke with Kenneth Wade, the president of the neighborhood’s homeowner’s association, who said they reach out to members when situations happen and encourage its members to keep an open dialog with neighbors.
“As it happens, we do reach out to our residents to let them know the situations are close to us and for them to be nosey neighbors,” Wade said. “That's the No. 1 defense, as far as I'm concerned.”
The people in the community said they are proud of the fact that they have an active neighborhood watch program, and it’s the one thing they're encouraging other neighborhoods to be involved in.
As for the Williams family, they're serving as reminders for what to do to keep your home protected.
“These days, we have to have protection in our homes,” Kecia Williams said. “We have to have cameras. We have to have storm doors. We have to give the neighbors the phone numbers. We have to be at unity in these communities.”
Copyright 2017 by WJXT News4Jax - All rights reserved.