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Wednesday 25 November 2009

Sneak Burglaries

Many people associate sneak in burglary with summer weather when doors and windows are left unlocked during warm weather. We are trying to get the message out that these types of burglaries can occur throughout the year. Around 36% of all burglaries happen through unlocked doors and windows. That is a massive percentage of burglaries that could be prevented by taking simple measures. It is worth pointing out that in the main Crewe & Nantwich is a safe place to reside. All areas can fall foul of these types of opportunist crimes but if we work together to spread the message to be vigilant we hope to be able to reduce the number of opportunities for would be burglars to engage in this type of behaviour in Crewe & Nantwich.

In many cases people simply forget to lock their doors and windows and may leave an opening insecure. It is advisable to try and get into a habit of checking all doors and windows are secure prior to leaving the house and before going to bed. If you begin to undertake a check regularly it will become part of a normal routine. People who have teenage children/other family members living with them need to ensure that they drive home the importance of always ensuring that doors and windows are secure to these members of the household. It serves little purpose for a couple of people in the house to follow these precautions if other members of the house fail to see the importance of taking these steps.

In several cases people choose to leave their doors and windows open for a variety of reasons and this is something that many of us are guilty of doing at times. It is easy to fall into the trap of believing that it won't happen to us because we have left doors and windows open before whilst nipping out and nothing has happened. This is by no means a fool proof system in terms of security as it relies purely on good luck and chance. Although it can be a pain, it is essential that all windows and doors are secured whenever you leave your house unoccupied, even if just for a matter of minutes - remember a couple of minutes is all it takes for someone to walk in and steal from you. Remember, it could affect a house insurance claim if they conclude that you have not taken reasonable steps to secure your property.

Amazingly, in some cases people actually leave doors insecure whilst they are absent from the property on a long term basis. Just last week officers in Crewe tried to attend some properties and found that although the owners were out that they had left their patio door / rear doors open to allow their dogs access to the garden. These houses have subsequently been warned about the dangers of doing this but it is a pattern that is likely to be repeated elsewhere in the area.

Contrary to popular belief a large proportion of sneak in burglaries and burglaries occur during daylight hours. Although most people fear coming face to face with a burglar in their home at night, in reality, many burglars want the easiest option where they can get the maximum return with the least chance of being caught. In many areas this tends to be during the day when the majority of residents in streets are at work, school, college etc and there is less natural surveillance from neighbours and passers by.

Even when present in your property it is advisable to lock access doors and close the windows in the rooms that you are not in, particularly on the ground floor. It is easy to be concentrating on something elsewhere in your property and for someone to open a door/lean through a window and take an item quickly such as a handbag, purse, wallet, phone etc.

Please pay particular attention to this advice and pass on to scheme members, friends and family and ask them to circulate as widely as possible. It is of particular note in the run up to Christmas as many households are busy buying and storing presents for friends and family (which may end up under Christmas trees in the upcoming weeks) so there are a high proportion of new and often expensive items in many homes that could provide easy pickings for a sneak in burglar with highly upsetting results for the householder.

As always if anyone witnesses any suspicious behaviour please contact Cheshire Constabulary via 999 if an emergency or 0845 458 0000 in all other instances.

If anyone has any anonymous information that they would like to provide this can be done via Cheshire Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

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