FBI assisting investigation into high-end home burglaries in area, including Rancho Santa Fe

Police cars at night.
The San Diego County Sheriff’s Department and FBI are investigating a spree of high-end burglaries that have occurred in the region, including north Poway and 4S Ranch, since May 2021.

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The FBI has been called in to help the San Diego County Sheriff’s Department investigate a spree of high-end burglaries that have occurred in the region since May 2021, Poway authorities said Friday, Jan. 21.

The burglaries, which are believed to be by the same organized group, have taken place in north Poway, 4S Ranch and Rancho Santa Fe.

The San Diego Police Department is investigating similar burglaries in Del Mar, La Jolla, Carmel Valley, Torrey Highlands, Del Mar Mesa and Black Mountain Ranch, officials said.
(See story on those burglaries at

There have been 26 residential burglaries within the San Diego Police Department’s Northwestern Division that are associated with this string of burglaries, police said. The San Diego County Sheriff’s Department did not respond to a request for comment by press time.

The Poway sheriff’s station reported in a tweet Wednesday, Jan. 19, that it had sent out information on these burglaries to specific neighborhoods a couple weeks ago. But due to national news reports of a similar case involving a celebrity, officials decided to share the information more broadly.

The Poway station retweeted a story about Lori Loughlin and Mossimo Giannulli reportedly having $1 million in jewelry stolen from their home in Los Angeles.

“These groups are operating throughout Southern California. This is the first case I’ve seen get this sort of coverage. A crime trend to be aware of,” the Poway tweet said.

More details on the local burglaries was not immediately available

Poway officials tweeted some findings from their investigation into the local burglaries.

The burglars are targeting master bedrooms and closet areas looking for high-end jewelry, handbags, cash and watches. Home surveillance camera systems will often be turned away, deputies said in the tweet.

“These suspects are highly organized, skilled and appear to have collective training,” deputies said. “They operate in groups, often teams of four, with three suspects doing the burglary and the fourth as a ‘getaway driver.’” All the burglars appear to be male.

The burglaries generally take place within the first hours after nightfall, deputies said.

“Knowing most home alarms are only active on the first floor, they prefer to make entry via a second-floor balcony. The suspects have utilized patio furniture, ladders and even scaled walls to gain access to the second story. Single-story homes have also been targeted though,” the tweet said.

The crimes have occurred quickly, typically in a few minutes. The suspects usually flee the same way they made entry, deputies said.

“When confronted by homeowners, the suspects have run away,” they said.

If you have an emergency, dial 911. The San Diego County Sheriff’s Department North Coastal Station’s non-emergency phone number is (760) 966-3500.