Police issue warning after rise in burglaries in Harpenden

A SHARP increase in household burglaries in Harpenden has prompted police to call on residents to be vigilant and pro-active in order to beat the burglars.

An increase in burglaries is normally anticipated in the winter months, particularly when the clocks go back, but Neighbourhood Sergeant Lewis Ducket said the numbers had risen quickly in the North Harpenden area over a very short period of time.

Sgt Ducket, said: “Neighbourhood officers have been carrying out high-visibility pro-active patrols in the area, in response to dwelling burglaries.

“They have been working in partnership with colleagues in neighbouring North Herts and work is also continuing in partnership with Bedfordshire Police, as it is believed offenders are moving between the areas.”

He said that suspicious vehicles entering the area were being monitored throughout November and December. He added: “I would really ask people to be vigilant and if you see suspicious vehicles or people within residential areas do not hesitate to call the Police on 0845 33 00 222 or if you think a crime is in progress, dial 999.”

The police are now calling on residents to be savvy and stay one step ahead of would-be burglars by following the Herts Police guidelines and avoid leaving items of value in visible places.

They are also, as part of Operation Guardian, encouraging residents to make their homes look occupied by using timer switches to activate lights and radios once it gets dark.

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PCSOs are now patrolling the area to identify houses which appear empty and are potential targets for burglars. They are then alerting owners to this and advising them accordingly.

The spike in burglaries is at odds with other areas throughout the district where there has been a decrease in the number of burglaries this month compared with November of last year. In comparison, there have been 16 fewer incidents in the city this year.