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Doorbell camera helps catch burglars in the act, police say

Men face multiple charges

Mahoki Francois and Erric Pipkin
Mahoki Francois and Erric Pipkin

ORLANDO, Fla. – A homeowner was able to help catch a pair of burglars in the act, thanks to a camera he had installed on his doorbell, according to the Orlando Police Department.

The Ring video doorbell sent a notification to the man's phone around 9:30 a.m. Wednesday, showing two men at his front door and the cream-colored Chrysler they were driving, the arrest report said.

The homeowner didn't recognize the men, so he called police to notify them of the suspicious activity.

When officers arrived to Hargill Drive in Dover Shores West, they found two men who matched the men seen in the picture walking from the carport of a home. When the men, identified as Erric Pipkin and Mahoki Francois, saw the officer, they ran in the opposite direction, according to the report.

Both men were cuffed after a chase through the neighborhood, police said.

After the arrest, officers checked the home and found a screwdriver and shears that the men were using to try to get inside the home, the affidavit said.

Francois, 19, and Pipkin, 20, face several charges in connection with the incident, including resisting arrest without violence, criminal mischief and burglary of a dwelling.

Neighbors told News 6 members of their community are being more vigilant and want to work together with law enforcement.

"I've had neighbors who left their garage door opened and I've called him and said 'Hey do you want me to come close it?'" resident Lynn Pool said. "That teaming up together it's going to stop crime before it starts."

Neighbor Bradley Zientara said it's better to be safe than sorry.

"If it doesn't look right call 911 and the OPD will be more than willing to come out and check things out," Zientara said.


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