Surveillance video captures smiling burglary suspect in St. Paul

- Neighbors and police are warning residents to watch out for suspicious behavior after surveillance video captured a home burglary in broad daylight in St. Paul.

Mike Kollos gets angry every time he watches his home surveillance video of a smiling thief walking right into his house. The bold burglary happened last Friday just before noon.

Kollos was working in his garage just steps away.

"Right in the garage -- what is this, 30, 40 feet away,” said Kollos.

Kollos lives in a quiet neighborhood in eastern St. Paul near Ivy and Birmingham. He believes the suspect had been casing the area for some time before he decided to strike last week.

Kollos' surveillance video shows the burglar on his phone trying to get into the front door, but it was locked. The man then goes around back and notices Kollos in the garage.

"Probably could see me in there,” he said. “He hid around my car, stopping, waiting and then just going straight through the door."

But not before grinning for a few seconds right at the camera. Kollos said the thief went straight for his wallet, taking credit cards and cash, then spent more than $3,000 at Mall of America.

"Never saw him, just that quick, probably 30 seconds," said Kollos.

St. Paul police say it's possible this burglar could be working with a larger group of people targeting homeowners during the day.

"It's very brazen,” said Sgt. Mike Ernster with the St. Paul Police Department. “It's a crime of opportunity. They saw the opportunity and they acted upon it."

While investigators on the burglary unit chase down leads, Kollos and his wife want to get the word out before something worse happens than getting your credit cards stolen.

"What if I walked in with somebody in my house?" Kollos said.

Police have not arrested anyone, but neighbors within the area say they've noticed several suspicious people in and out of yards recently, so everyone is on alert.

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