Kathryn Hunter
The thieves left behind this gaping whole in the drywall, still yet to be repaired.

Newly married, couple now wary of social media mention

by Kathryn Hunter
Contributing Writer

A newlywed West Seattle couple is shaken and wary after their house was broken into and burglarized Friday Nov. 8. With their wedding only a few short weeks behind them, they came home after a night out on the town to discover their front door kicked in. The thief or thieves bypassed the valuables in the living room and targeted the bedroom, stealing all the couple’s wedding cash, gift cards and more.

The thieves not only broke in the door frame, but also broke the couple's peace of mind. The couple is so uneasy that they wish to remain anonymous. The bride, 30, describes the event as “Very unsettling. Its not only sad that we lost our gifts and other material items, it’s that we lost our sense of safety in our own home.”

The front door and frame of their rental in the Arbor Heights neighborhood received extensive damage, along with a huge gaping hole in the drywall. The items listed as stolen included $1300 in cash, $500 in gift cards, an iPad 4, a 17” Toshiba laptop, and 3 bottles of wine. The Seattle Police officers who were called to the scene thought there was reason to believe the couple was targeted by someone they knew or at least someone who knew of their recent wedding.

The groom, 26, explains, “It just seems odd that they didn’t try and steal any of the other valuables in plain site. They just went right for the bedroom. It feels like they knew we had wedding cash and gifts hidden.”

The couple speculates that information shared on social media could be partially responsible for the thieves knowledge of the couple’s whereabouts on evening in question.

“We checked ourselves in on Facebook at the restaurant that evening,” according to the bride, “It’s possible that the person who broke in saw our check-in and knew we wouldn't be at home for a bit. It just makes me lose trust in everything. And makes me want to keep my information more private online.”
The emotional and psychological effects of the crime committed has left a lasting effect on the couple’s happiness.
“My husband is losing sleep, we’re both jumpy and on edge. And we’re left to question the motives and character of all our friends and acquaintances who may have known about the cash we had received as gifts from our wedding. It doesn't feel good to have to be suspicious of people we trusted.”

A new deadbolt was installed on their front door Monday. The couple has plans to install a security system with surveillance. “It’s just a shame,” the groom said. “I normally would never have considered the need for personal weapons for home defense, but now I'm thinking twice about all that.”

When asked what advice they could give other members of the community regarding this issue, the bride suggested, “Keep your porch light on and deadbolts locked. Don’t keep any large amounts of cash at home. Have renters insurance. We learned the hard way. Be careful what you post about on social media. Look out for your neighbors, join your neighborhood watch program and report any suspicious activity to the Seattle Police.”

While their sense of safety and trust remain shaken, the couple is still grateful for the love they share and for the support from their friends and community, “We still love West Seattle, we couldn't imagine living anywhere else. We agreed to tell our story as a way for the community to educate itself and band together against crimes such as this one.”

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