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Warnings over Lowestoft house burglaries

PUBLISHED: 14:24 27 February 2009 | UPDATED: 22:39 05 July 2010

WARNINGS have again been issued to residents in Lowestoft following a spate of break-ins at homes across the town.

And as detectives continue to hunt for thieves believed to be responsible for almost 100 house burglaries and attempted burglaries since before Christmas, police this week revealed that "a lot of work is going on to detain" these offenders.

WARNINGS have again been issued to residents in Lowestoft following a spate of break-ins at homes across the town.

And as detectives continue to hunt for thieves believed to be responsible for almost 100 house burglaries and attempted burglaries since before Christmas, police this week revealed that “a lot of work is going on to detain” these offenders.

In an effort to beat the burglars, police have stepped up patrols and officers have been distributing leaflets to homes in areas where there have been burglaries.

With work continuing to target those responsible, a number of individuals have been arrested in recent weeks - but despite this police called on local residents “to be vigilant” and to help prevent the burglars striking in the future.

The Journal revealed a fortnight ago that between December 23 and February 10 there had been 62 house burglaries and attempted burglaries recorded across Carlton Colville, Kirkley and Lowestoft.

But in the past two weeks, this figure has risen sharply - despite only six incidents being recorded between February 10 to February 16. This is due in large to 23 house burglaries and attempted burglaries being reported between February 17 to February 23.

And with 91 incidents of house burglaries, which includes attempted burglaries where no entry has been gained, a police spokesman said that the most recent figure “is still very high.”

Police press officer Anne-Marie Breach said: “At this stage a lot of work is going on to detain those responsible and the public in general can play their part by calling officers immediately using 999 if they see anything unusual.

“There are things you can do to make your home less vulnerable to burglars - such as not leaving keys in doors and putting your lights on a timer that automatically comes on when it gets dark - and if anyone would like further advice they can call Suffolk Police Crime Reduction Officer Bruce Granger on 01986 835300.”

Offering some vital home security advice this week following this increase in house burglaries in Lowestoft recently, Suffolk Police Crime Reduction Officer Bruce Granger sent out the following guidance to householders to help reduce the risk of becoming a victim.

“Most burglaries are committed by forcing rear windows and doors although offenders may knock on front doors first to ascertain if there is anyone in,” he said.

“Leaving doors or windows insecure, even when in the house, allows the opportunist thief to enter and steal. If a householder answers the door the offender may use any excuse or story before leaving,” he added. “If no answer, he will go to the side or back of the property and force an entry.”

TOP 10 TIPS:

1 Keep doors/windows, especially on the ground floor, secured, even when you're in the house or garden.

2 Report any unusual/suspect callers, using 999, and give description/direction of travel and car registration if possible.

3 Prevent access to side/rear of properties by high [min 6ft/1.8metre] fences/walls/gates. Use mortice locks or padlocked bolts on side gates if possible.

Consider increasing the height [i.e. with trellis or a specially designed topping such as PRIKKASTRIP-plastic strip with conical points available from some builders merchants] to make climbing more difficult.

Move wheelie bins and suchlike away from climbing points [and consider securing with a chain and padlock].

4 Don't leave keys in window/door locks.

5 Consider add-on window locks on older/single paned windows.

6 Consider fitting a Burglar alarm as a back-up. There are local security companies who will quote for installing or kits are available at DIY stores [some are wireless and do not need an electrician to fit].

7 Don't leave garden implements/tools about - ensure all are locked in sheds/garages.

8 Sheds/Garages - fit a battery operated alarm [if no house alarm] in movement sensor mode [activates if door opened and no code entered] - available at police stations or DIY stores at minimal cost.

9 Garage doors [up and over type] -fit a bolt to inside of door into side frame or ground to prevent access if top catch is slipped.

10 If using a small security safe, ensure it is effectively bolted into brickwork/concrete and cannot be easily levered out.

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