Thief Uses Garage Door Opener to Gain Access to Home

Grapevine couple warns homeowners about their mistake

By Amanda Guerra
|  Wednesday, Mar 14, 2012  |  Updated 10:51 PM CDT
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A Garland couple says a thief gained access to their home after finding their garage door opener in their car parked outside.

Amanda Guerra, NBC 5 News

A Garland couple says a thief gained access to their home after finding their garage door opener in their car parked outside.

A Grapevine couple said a common mistake led to a robber breaking into their home Monday night.

Garrett and Lauren Dimon woke up in the middle of the night to their blaring house alarm.

Garrett Dimon noticed his garage door was open when he rushed around the house to see what was wrong. The contents of his garage were scattered across the floor, and beer was missing from his garage refrigerator.

Dimon said the alarm went off because the thief opened the door from the garage that leads into the house.

His wife and 8-month-old daughter, Bella, were sleeping in a room just feet away from the door.

"To have an 8-month-old daughter and your wife in the next room -- they were sleeping almost right next to that door where he would've come in," Dimon said. "It's incredible concerning."

The alarm was enough to scare the thief away, but Dimon wanted to know exactly how the person made it into his garage.

The answer was just a few feet away inside his wife's car, which was parked outside.

"[I] checked the car and noticed there was a whole bunch of stuff in the seat," he said. "Clearly somebody kind of rifled through things and shuffled around, and the garage door opener was sitting on the seat, which then made it very clear -- OK, that's how they got into the garage," he said.

Police said it's a common mistake homeowners never think about. If a thief can get to a garage door opener, he or she could be just one click away from the entire home.

"Well, now I have the garage door opener in my purse," Lauren Dimon said. "And now I make sure to lock my door anytime I leave or every time I get out of the car."

"You never know," she said. "You don't think it's going to happen and then it does, and you're thankful you do have an alarm, and it did go out, and he ran way."

The best thing homeowners can do is keep their garage door openers with them and lock the door that goes from the garage to the home. There is also special equipment, including garage door openers, that can lock or kill power to the garage door.

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