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Burglars hit homes across the county
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For some Newton County residents, the term Christmas shopping may have a new meaning, now that criminals have used their homes as a source for free items. Deputies in the Newton County Sheriff's Office are investigating a recent string of home burglaries across the county. While residents are away, criminals have hit, taking everything from cell phones to ATVs.

A Covington woman reported Dec. 8 a break-in at a home she was taking care of while the owner was away. The thieves made off with a revolver and two semi-automatic handguns.

According to the incident report, when the woman checked on the house around 9 p.m. Dec. 8, she realized someone had pried open the back door. After checking out the home, she discovered downstairs that a security bar had been broken off the cabinet where the guns were kept and the guns were missing.

The weapons are a .45 caliber semi-automatic handgun, a .380 caliber semi-automatic handgun and a .357 revolver handgun. Nothing else in the house was reported missing.

Also on Dec. 8, a Conyers man reported that on Dec. 6, his back door had been kicked in and two cell phones and a laptop computer had been stolen.

According to the incident report, the cell phones are valued at $50 each and the Compaq laptop is valued at $400.There are no witnesses in the case.

On Dec. 7, A Covington woman reported a TV/DVD combo unit, a DVD player and a BB gun has been stolen from her Newton County home.

According to the incident report, between 6 p.m. Dec. 6 and 9:15 a.m. Dec. 7, someone broke into her home and made away with the items.

The TV/DVD player is valued at $289, the DVD player is valued at $200 and the BB gun is valued at $75. There are no witnesses in the case.

On Dec. 6, a Covington man reported that his 2003 Yamaha ATV had been swiped from his property.

The criminals broke the lock on an out building where he kept the ATV and a John Deere riding lawn mover.

The owner noticed the ATV had been stolen when he found the lawn mower sitting outside of the building. Nothing else had been reported missing.