WEST MILFORD - Homeowners in West Milford are on high alert tonight after four homes in their community were burglarized in broad daylight.

News 12 New Jersey has been told that all of the burglaries took place in just the past few weeks.

Police say that the thieves are targeting homes in more secluded neighborhoods and are looking for jewelry. In one case, about $20,000 in gold and diamonds were stolen.

West Milford police say in one instance the thieves broke into a safe in one of the homes and stole two loaded handguns.

Lt. Keith Ricciardi of the West Milford Police Department says that officers are on a heightened state of alert just in case the thieves are carrying the stolen handguns. Ricciardi says that the burglars are also targeting homes located off Route 23, enabling them to make a quick getaway.

News 12 New Jersey has been told that none of the burglarized homes had surveillance cameras, so police are relying on homeowners to report any suspicious activity.

Neighbors in West Milford say they plan to do whatever is necessary to protect their homes.