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Protecting Our Community: Addressing the Rise in 'Dinnertime Burglaries' in Southern California

Cops investigate burglary
Src: KTLA 5


In recent weeks, the tranquil communities of the San Fernando Valley have been shaken by a concerning surge in what residents are calling "dinnertime burglaries." With three reported cases of home invasions occurring between 7 p.m. and 8 p.m., a typical dinnertime hour, residents are understandably on edge. This unsettling trend has prompted a call for increased vigilance and community cooperation to address the issue and safeguard our homes.

The Stories

The vivid accounts of victims such as Tim Gaspar, whose Woodland Hills home was targeted on Nov. 13, shed light on the gravity of the situation. Gaspar returned home to find his back door smashed in, his security cameras torn from the walls, and his personal space violated. Even more distressing was the pepper-spraying of the family's beloved German Shepherd and the forced opening of gun safes, leaving them thankful that the burglars left the firearms behind.

Similar incidents have been reported in Sherman Oaks, where a glass door was shattered in a violent break-in at 7:50 p.m., and in Woodland Hills, where intruders forced their way into a home at 7:40 p.m., targeting elderly residents. The common thread in these incidents is the targeted time frame during which residents are presumed to be away at dinner.

Community Concerns

The surge in "dinnertime burglaries" has sparked genuine concern among residents, prompting them to question the safety of their homes during what should be peaceful evening hours. The potential proximity of residents to the burglars, as seen in Gaspar's case, adds an extra layer of unease. Despite these concerns, the Los Angeles Police Department has yet to confirm or comment on the existence of a specific "dinnertime robbery" trend.

Community Response

In the face of this unsettling trend, it is essential for residents to take proactive measures to protect their homes. Tim Gaspar emphasizes the importance of fortifying home security systems and encourages neighbors to communicate and share relevant stories. By fostering a sense of community and collective watchfulness, residents can work together to prevent future break-ins and ensure the safety of their neighborhoods.


As Southern California communities grapple with the rise in "dinnertime burglaries," it is crucial for residents to unite and take action. By fortifying our homes, sharing information, and staying vigilant, we can create a safer environment for everyone. Let us turn this challenging situation into an opportunity to strengthen our sense of community and protect the places we call home.

Source: KTLA 5


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