Ashern RCMP are asking for the public’s help to identify suspects in a series of break and enters and thefts in the Interlake community.
Between January and April, a total of 23 break-ins to local businesses have been reported to police, with a medical clinic, law office, arena, and school among the targeted sites.
“We want to remind everyone in the area to be alert and vigilant,” said RCMP Sgt. Richard Marshall.
“If you see something, say something. Report any suspicious activity to police. For store owners, secure your doors and windows, keep outdoor lights on, and consider installing an alarm or video surveillance.”
Police said the break-ins are typically taking place in the early morning hours, and in most cases, the suspects are getting in by smashing windows.
Once inside, they’ve been stealing cash and small items.
RCMP Cpl. Julie Courchene told 680 CJOB that cops aren’t sure what’s behind the crime spree, and can’t confirm – yet – whether the break-ins are they’re being committed by the same people.
“This is a small time period, there’s 23 break and enters, all in Ashern. The motive, the way they’re getting in, appears to be consistent,” she said.
“So there seems to be a correlation – there is a good possibility it could be the same people.”
The question of whether the break-ins are drug-related also remains to be seen.
“Obviously we know about the meth problem in Winnipeg. Have we seen that increase in meth in our rural communities? Yes, for sure we have,” said Courchene.
“But to say that’s behind this, we can’t say that until we make an arrest and do further investigation.”
Anyone with information is asked to contact Ashern RCMP at 204-768-2311 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477. You can also submit a secure tip online at manitobacrimestoppers.com.
WATCH: Winnipeg man arrested Sunday also charged in 2014 break-and-enter