Police urge Suffolk homeowners to protect their property against opportunistic thieves
- Credit: Ian Burt
Suffolk Police are reminding residents to protect their homes against opportunistic thieves as the days become longer and warmer.
The force said warmer weather can bring with it offenders on the look-out for lapses in security, such as open doors and windows, particularly when valuables are left on display.
Since January 2016, at least 29pc of burglaries in Suffolk have been as a result of an unlocked door or open window.
Detective Superintendent Andy Smith said: 'At this time of year, burglars know that many of us will want to open windows and doors to let the fresh air in, even when we're in the garden. As a result, we tend to see more burglaries in the warmer months as homes are left more insecure.
'Thieves typically look for the easy option by looking for gaps in security and are often not afraid to try door locks. I would urge residents to look at their home security through a thief's eye to prevent them from becoming an easy target. For instance, if you can pull your front door handle down from the inside, so can a burglar.'
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In the coming weeks, Suffolk Police will be sharing crime prevention messages across its social media pages, with illustrative scenes involving garden gnomes to raise awareness of some of the simple steps residents can take to help them avoid becoming a victim of crime.
The posts will be shared using #GnomeSecurity in a bid to make them more memorable, whilst also appealing to the younger generation.
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D/Supt Smith added: 'Garage and outbuilding break-ins are also common at this time of year as burglars look for power tools, bikes and other expensive items. Thieves will also look for utensils to help them break into homes so make sure you use good quality locks and keep garden gates locked.
'I would also encourage people to keep an eye on their neighbours' homes, particularly when you know they are on holiday. Setting up or joining a Neighbourhood Watch Scheme is an excellent way to work together in preventing your area from being targeted.
'Being the victim of a burglary can have both an emotional and financial impact, however protecting your home doesn't have to be expensive.'
For more security advice visit https://www.suffolk.police.uk/advice/crime-prevention-z.