Three Whangarei teenagers have been arrested after they were disturbed in an elderly couple's home.
Police arrested three young people for burglary at Otangarei about 4am on Saturday.
Area Commander Whangarei Kaipara Inspector Tracy Phillips said it was believed the trio are also responsible for a number of similar burglaries in the area over the past week.
Ms Phillips said the males, aged 14 to 16, were disturbed in an elderly couple's house.
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The female occupant bravely confronted them, yelled at them to get out of her house and then quickly called 111.
Police were in the area at the time and a dog and handler helped to link the trio with the scene.
Police say when caught they initially denied the burglary, until the couple's cell phone rang in their pocket. They also had other stolen items on them, linking them back to the burglary scene.
The three youths were in custody before appearing in Whangarei District Court on Saturday. Two remained in custody while one was granted bail.
Ms Phillips said follow-up interventions would be done through Youth Aid.
Police are concerned with the recent spate of intruder burglaries, targeting in many cases elderly victims.
Anyone with information can call the Whangarei Police on (09) 430-4500 or can call anonymously on the Crime Stoppers hotline: 0800 555-111.