A MAJOR campaign has been launched to try to crackdown on ‘sneak-in’ burglaries across Burton.
Staffordshire Police has revealed that it was forced to make efforts to try to tackle the problem after the area saw a 57 per cent increase in reports of the crime.
Now, officers and PCSOs will be flooding the area in a bid to provide residents, particularly elderly people, with crime prevention advice and put an end to this dramatic and alarming rise in incidents.
Chief superintendent Jon Drake said: “Many sneak-in burglary offences are preventable, with the offenders gaining entry to the house via an insecure door or window.
“Sneak-in burglary is a crime that has increased in recent years with some areas in Staffordshire seeing a 57 per cent increase against previous years’ statistics.
“It is imperative that residents make sure their properties are secure during the day, evening and overnight, even when they are home. We urge householders to be vigilant and report anyone acting suspiciously to us.”
Police chiefs told the Mail that more thieves than ever are ‘taking opportunities’ and gaining entry via insecure doors, mainly rear doors which lead into the kitchen.
Elderly people top of the list of people being targeted. In some reported cases, homeowners have even been inside the house during the crime.
Small valuable items such as handbags, mobile phones, laptops and tablets are the main targets, with night-time being the most popular time for offences to take place.
Leaflets are being distributed to homes across the area to advise owners to take extra precautions.
Risks can be minimised by ensuring the following measures:
• Locking all external doors even when homeowners are in;
• Never leaving a phone, handbag, wallet, tablet or laptop near a door or window;
• Investing in a good-quality home security system; and
• Installing security lights to the front and rear of a property and consider installing CCTV cameras.
To report a crime, people should call police on 101.