Protect Your Business from Professional Burglars

Scott Hornick was called the “one minute” burglar because he was the ringleader of a burglary gang that could burglarize a business in 60 seconds or less.

On May 17th, Hornick was sentenced to 27 years in prison for his conviction of six counts of interstate transportation of stolen property and two counts of conspiracy stemming from a burglary spree he engaged in after escaping from prison.

According to the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Eastern District of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, Hornick led a gang of burglars that carried out a burglary spree that spanned more than a dozen states up and down the East Coast. The gang struck over 150 businesses and caused losses of more than $1.78 million dollars.

Hornick and his gang used disguises and burglary tools to forcibly enter businesses after hours, fill bags with store merchandise, such as cameras, watches, medications, perfume, and guitars, and load the bags into stolen or rented vehicles.

Hornick and his gang then transported their stolen goods to Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, just outside of Philadelphia, where they handed over the stolen merchandise to a professional “fence.” The fence resold the merchandise on the black market.

“According to the indictment, these defendants made a career out of stealing from hard-working businesses owners in order to support themselves,” U.S. Attorney Michael L. Levy said last year at the time the indictments were handed down against Hornick and others in his gang.

“Because of the cooperation of law enforcement agencies in numerous states, this “one minute” burglar now faces many years in prison,” Levy added.

“This investigation involved many law enforcement agencies from across the East Coast and spanned six years,” said Special Agent-in-Charge Janice K. Fedarcyk of the Philadelphia Division of the FBI. “However, it underscores the determination and persistence of the FBI and our law enforcement partners in our pursuit of those who seek to profit from crime and evade the justice they deserve.”

Although Hornick and his cohorts are in prison, there are still many more professional burglars at work.

To prevent your business from being burglarized, you should take the following basic steps.

  • Light all exterior doors and windows with permanent fixtures that are difficult to reach.
  • Light the interior of your business so someone outside can see in.
  • Install a see-through fence around your property.  
  • Install safety glass. It is much harder to break.
  • Install entry alarms on doors and windows, and motion detectors.  
  • Install a deadbolt lock on each door.
  • Install quality cameras both indoors and outdoors.
  • Place signs that state your place of business is alarmed and protected.

Check with your local police department for more tips on protecting your business.

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