Call for vigilance after thieves target outbuildings and vehicles in Penketh, Warrington
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Cheshire Constabulary is urging people living in and around the Penketh area of Warrington to be vigilant after thieves targeted garages, sheds and vehicles in a series of incidents.
Between 3.30am on Tuesday 12 November and 9.15am on Wednesday 13 November the force received nine reports of burglary incidents involving outbuildings in Penketh and two reports of items being stolen from cars.
Outbuildings were targeted in Meeting Lane and Kenyon Avenue between 3am and 3.30am on Tuesday 12 November.
Thieves also attempted to gain entry to a van in Meeting Lane.
Other outbuildings were targeted in Larch Avenue, The Park, Station Road and Stocks Lane.
The theft from car incidents occurred in Larch Avenue and Walton Avenue.
Enquiries in relation to the incidents are ongoing as officers attempt to identity the offenders and make them face the consequences of their actions.
They are urging anyone with information about garage, shed or vehicle break-ins in Penketh to come forward and are appealing for residents to take action to reduce their chances of becoming victims.
Inspector Ruth Atherton, of Warrington Local Policing Unit, said: “There has been a spike in the number of garages, sheds and vehicles being targeted by thieves in Penketh, with 11 incidents reported within a 30-hour period.
“Enquiries are ongoing in a bid to establish who committed the offences.
“We are patrolling in the area and I urge anyone with any information regarding the incidents or the identities of offenders to get in touch with us here at Warrington Police Station.
“You can call us on 101 or contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.
“Residents can also help us and themselves by making it as difficult as possible for criminals to enter their outbuildings and vehicles and steal their belongings.
“They can do this by following our crime avoidance advice.”
Tips for deterring would-be thieves
Never leave a garage, shed or other outbuilding unlocked and easy prey for opportunist thieves
Fit strong padlocks to outbuilding doors and make sure that the doors are solid enough not to be kicked in
Good external security lighting can put off or draw attention to a thief/burglar – the most appropriate form is high efficiency low energy lighting controlled by a dusk-to-dawn switch so that it only comes on when it is dark
If you have external security lighting that comes on when sensing movement, make sure that the lights are directed downwards to prevent them from being annoying to neighbours and dangerous to passing traffic
Strong fencing or gates will make it difficult for intruders to get onto your land
Solid fences or walls, particularly those with a flat or rounded top, are relatively easy for a thief/burglar to climb over – fixing trellising to the top can make it more difficult
Check for weak spots where a thief/burglar could get onto your land, such as a low or sagging fence or a back gate with a weak lock
A thorny hedge along the boundary of your property can put thieves and burglars off, as can gravel areas due to the noise of walking on them.
Try to park your vehicle in well-lit areas
Ensure that your vehicle is locked and secure with the windows up whenever you are not inside it, even if you are only leaving it unattended for a brief moment
Remember to activate your alarm and/or steering lock whenever you get out of your vehicle
Never leave valuable items inside your vehicle, such as mobile phones, laptops and cash
Do not leave anything that may attract an opportunist thief visible in your vehicle and never be tempted to hide valuable items in the glovebox or under seats
Do not forget to remove your satnav and the fascia of your car stereo when you get out of the vehicle − ensure that you detach the cradle
Also remember to wipe away the mark from the windscreen that is left by the suction pad, as this is a telltale sign for thieves that you have a satnav.