BAXTER SPRINGS -- A rural Cherokee County home was nearly broken into Thursday when the homeowner's alarm system scared the would-be theives off.

According to Cherokee County Undersheriff Terry Clugston the sheriff's department recieved the call about 10:53 a.m. Thursday and officers were on scene by 11:03 a.m. but the burglers had already fled leaving behind a broken window in a door and a set of tire tracks.

Clugston said the incident is still under investigation.

He also said homeowners, especially in rural areas, need to take precautions.

"Definatly make sure your houses are locked up and secure before you leave," he said. "The people who live in those areas know the vehicles that belong there, so if they see a vehicle that doesn't belong or is suspicious call our office and let us know."

Clugston said it's only the fourth such call in the county since the first of the year.

"It's not like it's a pattern," he said, adding the other calls have not been in the same area.