GWINNETT COUNTY, Ga. — Imagine an individual breaking into your home and then throwing a massive house party. Well, it’s the latest trend and on Thursday, a Gwinnett County homeowner became the latest victim. Now, law enforcement and relators are telling homeowners across the area to be on the lookout.
“They’re going in and having a great time and leaving your house how they wanna leave it and they're gone,” Realtor Don Jacobs said – referring to the latest trend of teens throwing a house party in a vacant home.
“There’s always been an endless amount of homes that are vacant, the problem is awareness. Now the people that are actually doing this, they are more aware of their rights, they are more aware of how to get in these homes," Jacobs said.
And that's what happened Thursday when hundreds of teens gathered at a home in the Madison Chase subdivision in Gwinnett County, without permission.
“We believe there was a group of at least 200 to 300 individuals. Attending a house party at a house that was for sale in the neighborhood,” Gwinnett County Sergeant Michelle Pihera said.
Pihera said the owners of that property whose address was not disclosed, no longer live in the area. And she is warning parents and homeowners of the latest trend.
“What we're finding through our investigation is sometimes teens will find a home that’s for sale and they will break into the home and host a party there, unbeknownst to the owners of the residence,” Pihera said.
She added parents should keep an eye on their teens and those who own vacant properties, should also contact their local law enforcement and request frequent area checks.
“That means when our officers are not tied up on a call, I’ll go and do a drive-through of your home to make sure no one has broken in when you’re out of town," Pihera said.
As for Jacobs, he said during the summer months – there are more vacant properties, which he worries will result in more illegal parties.
“You have a lot of investors in Atlanta and they’re fixing up a lot of houses and getting ready for folks who want to move around the summertime, so yeah you’re going to see a big surge of houses out there but you’re also going to see a lot more parties going on,” Jacobs added.