Locks and Security News: your weekly locks and security industry newsletter
21st October 2020 Issue no. 530
Your industry news - first
We strongly recommend viewing Locks and Security News full size in your web browser. Click our masthead above to visit our website version.
Burglary detectives warn of 'absence checks'
Kent burglary detectives are asking homeowners to be on their guard against a technique that burglars have been known to use to identify vulnerable properties.
In other parts of the country, reports have been received of stickers being placed on doors or letterboxes of houses advertising a locksmith service. The sticker has a telephone number on it, but the number is not a registered number. If the stickers are not removed, burglars presume that the house is empty or that the owners are away.
Placing the stickers also gives burglars the opportunity to 'scout out' the house, and look through windows but to be able to explain themselves as 'delivering advertising' if anyone were to stop them and ask questions.
Police officers recently cracked a similar case in Sevenoaks where the offender was leaving mud on doors to see if it was cleaned away. If it wasn't, the property was potentially empty and a good target. The offender was caught and sentenced to four years and eight months in prison.
Police are now asking that homeowners keep an eye out for - and to report - any suspicious activity to ensure that burglars are thwarted before they get a chance to strike. The advice comes as officers continue their crackdown on burglary as part of Operation Castle, which is a force wide initiative designed target burglary suspects in the winter months.
Detective Chief Inspector Neil Parker from Kent Police said: 'At Christmas time people tend to have some high value and new items in the house that are appealing to burglars. That is why we are asking members of the public to keep an eye out for unusual signs that might suggest the house has been 'marked' as a possible target and to report this or anything suspicious to us. It is well worth homeowners investing in items such as timer switches for lights, and alarms for sheds, and if they would like further advice around these they can visit our local Police Contact Points.'
4th December 2013