Warning After Rise In Walk-In Burglaries

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Warning After Rise In Walk-In Burglaries

Police in Cheltenham and Tewkesbury are asking residents to be vigilant after a series of what is described as walk-in burglaries. This is when an offender enters a property through an unlocked door or window and steals the first thing they can, often a handbag, wallet or keys.

Detective Sergeant Mark Pettit wants people to be aware, he said; "This is a problem associated with the summer months when people go out, forgetting to shut windows and doors. But opportunist criminals are not concerned by the weather, they are still finding homes that have failed to lock up properly.

We have had eight crimes reported in the last week alone of people who have had either handbags, wallets and even laptops stolen by someone who has entered through an insecure door."

Police do not believe this is the work of just one person, DS Pettit said; "These crimes have been reported throughout the Division, there is no particular pattern to them, the only similarity is that the thief has entered through an unlocked or opened door."

Officers have the following tips to try and prevent you becoming a victim of a walk-in burglary.

* Never leave your door unlocked, even if you are at home.
* Always ensure that your car keys, handbag and wallet are not left near the front door or where they are visible through a window.
* Be aware of anyone hanging around in the area that you don't recognise.

Operations to target these thieves will be running throughout the area on a regular basis. DS Pettit hopes the community will get involved he said; "We are asking for the public's help, please ensure your property is secure and if you are concerned about anyone who is in your area and behaving in a suspicious way then tell us about it. If you see a suspicious vehicle then get the registration number. If we work together we can not only catch the people responsible but also hopefully prevent the crime from happening in the first place."

If you have any information about walk-in burglaries or those who are responsible you can call police on 0845 090 1234, alternatively you can remain anonymous and call Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.

Posted : 06/02/2007 15:10:18

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