Solon police dispatchers received multiple calls on Feb. 21 after an unknown number of thieves broke into four cars within four hours and stole over $5,000 worth of property.
From 7:30 to 11 p.m., police responded to the Blue Star Tavern, Panini's and Panera Bread parking lots to investigate the break-ins that appeared to be connected.
Two SUVs and two pickup trucks had their windows smashed out, and in each case, a book bag or duffle bag was stolen. The stolen items included schoolbooks, laptops and two unloaded handguns.
According to Solon Police Lt. Bruce Felton, the thief or thieves likely targeted the bigger vehicles since they lack traditional trunk space, making their valuables more exposed.
This isn't the first time Solon has seen these crimes committed in rapid succession from restaurant parking lots, said Felton; and to avoid detection, he doubts those responsible will be back again soon.
He added that similar break-ins occurred in Beachwood, Bedford Heights and Orange on Feb. 21.
Solon police detectives are investigating the string of break-ins.