Bogus Burglars with a "Lock Up" Message
Police Officers across East Cheshire are posing
as burglars in an attempt to persuade people to lock their doors.
Officers in plain clothes are carrying out patrols trying the
door handles of houses and flats in the hours between 4pm
and 2am. Wherever they find one unlocked, they knock until someone
answers, even if it means getting someone out of bed.
Then they give the message, "If we had been burglars, by
now you would have lost cash, valuables such as a laptop
or an ipod, sentimental items such as jewellery and possibly
the car off your drive!"
As well as the ‘burglaries with good intent’, Police
Officers and Police Community Support Officers are distributing
thousands of door hanger cards which list security checks to
be carried out before anyone leaves home, even for a short
time. The cards are designed to be left on the door handle or lock
as a permanent reminder about home security.
They are also offering an opportunity for people to claim prizes
for taking part in the crime prevention campaign, code named
The Police Operation is a response to the
fact that nearly forty per cent of all burglaries in East
Cheshire are carried out through unlocked doors or downstairs windows
which have been left open.
Chief Inspector Peter Crowcroft,
in charge of Neighbourhood Policing in Cheshire Police Eastern
Area, said, "There are burglars who specialise in sneak-ins.
They walk around streets, nipping in and out of gardens and trying
doors until they find one unlocked.
"Most of them don’t care if
anyone is in the house. Even if the family is in the next room
watching television or eating, the criminal will walk into the
kitchen or hallway, grab a bag, purse, or some other item of
value and be out again in seconds.
"These burglaries can be avoided
by locking the door. It is the simplest bit of crime prevention
you can imagine and it’s surprising that so many people make
their homes vulnerable by simply failing to turn a key.
Police Officers put a tremendous amount of work into catching
criminals but prevention is a far better answer. We are asking
everyone to play their part and take elementary precautions to
protect their homes and keep the rats out.
"Cheshire Police as a
whole is about to launch a Lock Up campaign. Operation Golden
is about raising the profile of security at home and keeping people
The Golden Ticket
Some of the crime prevention door hangers handed
out as part of Operation Golden include a Golden Ticket which
will open the door to prizes. Police are looking for local sponsors
to support this initiative.
"The person who receives one
of the Golden Tickets will be able to claim vouchers towards
the cost of things like iPods, books or a meal for two at a local
restaurant," said Chief Inspector Peter Crowcroft.
and Police Community Support Officers will distribute the door
hangers while they are out on patrol and we hope the chance of
a prize will add some extra interest.
"It is about getting the
message across. Do you read all the leaflets that you receive?
We want to add a little something extra which we hope will make
our door hanger cards more readable. Then we want people to take
note of what’s on them and leave them on the door as a constant
reminder of what they ought to be doing as a matter of course.
"We believe this check list of simple security precautions can
make your home a lot safer from crime. Above all, we hope people
will get into the habit of home security. Most people do lock
up. Please be one of the crowd."
Steps to Beat the Burglar:
- Lock Doors and secure windows at all
- Check doors and windows before going to bed;
- Set any security
alarms before going to bed and when you go out;
- Make the house
look occupied when you are out. Set time switches on lights
and on a radio;
- Keep an eye open for anyone acting suspiciously
in your neighbourhood. If you are concerned about anything
report it on the Cheshire Police Information
line 101 ;
- If you have any information about burglaries call
the information Line (above) or you can leave information
anonymously on the Crimestoppers line
0800 555 111.