An arrest in connection to at least one of several burglaries at homes along the border of Loudoun and Fauquier counties is bringing anxious residents some relief.
They have been on high alert since last October when thieves began breaking into homes during daylight hours. They have been stealing expensive jewelry, electronics and precious metals.
There have been at least six burglaries. The latest happened on January 17 in Middleburg.
The burglars are gaining entry by breaking windows or the glass on doors.
The victims appear to be randomly picked.
Authorities say it isn't clear if the cases are connected.
According to authorities, Damian Scott Francis Falero, 29, of Farmville, was arrested in Richmond on Sunday and charged with burglary in connection with a van stolen Friday from Boxwood Winery in the Plains. Investigators are trying to determine if Falero and a second suspect might be involved in the rash of burglaries.
On Thursday night, Loudoun County's sheriffs and other law enforcement officials met with residents at Banneker Elementary School in Middleburg to address concerns and talk about the arrest.
"We want to make sure before we jump to any conclusions that we have a good strong tie between all the cases, to see if it's one group or one person or if it's several," says Sheriff Mike Chapman.
There are increased police patrols, and authorities are reminding residents to be on alert and to take safety precautions.
The Loudoun County Sheriff's Office also advises residents to never leave doors/windows unlocked. Make sure, if available, to activate your security alarm when not at home.
Consider getting a free home security assessment from the Loudoun County Sheriff's Office by contacting Major John Fraga at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Loudoun County Sheriff's Office also asks residents to report any suspicious activity, persons, or vehicles immediately by calling the Loudoun County Sheriff's Office 24-hour non-emergency line at 703-777-1021.