Bury St Edmunds: Burglar strikes at town police station - through open window

POLICE have been left embarrassed after a Suffolk station was burgled – apparently through an open window – just a day after they launched a campaign reminding residents to make sure their homes were left secure.

Security is now being reviewed at Bury St Edmunds police station, which is a response hub and custody centre only metres from the magistrates’ court, after it emerged it was burgled on Wednesday night at about 10pm.

It came just a day after the launch of the “Close it, lock it, check it” campaign, during which officers revealed more than a quarter of all house burglaries are as a result of poor security – like an unlocked door or open window.

The slogan has been painted onto the side of a bus, which will spread the message across Suffolk for the next year.

At the campaign launch, Assistant Chief Constable Paul Marshall said: “More than a quarter of all domestic burglaries in Suffolk are as a result of an insecurity – an unlocked door, an open window.

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“It is important that people realise how they can avoid becoming a victim of burglary by following simple crime prevention advice and checking that their doors and windows are locked every time they go out.” Police would not confirm how the intruder got into Bury police station, although the EADT understands the initial report is that it was through an open window.

A man has been arrested and charged in connection with the police station offence, and is due to appear at Bury St Edmunds Magistrates’ Court next Friday.

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Speaking yesterday, a police spokeswoman said a suspicious man was seen inside the police station, in Raingate Street, and ran from the building when challenged by an officer.

Officers immediately searched the area and a 31-year-old man from Newmarket was arrested on suspicion of burglary and was taken into custody.

Yesterday, scenes of crime officers completed an examination of the station which covers how the man got in and what areas he may have had access to.

The spokeswoman said: “Any police station has areas which are of higher security than others – for example some offices will be locked, keypad secured, etc. Security at the station will now be reviewed.”

She said items had been seized from the man, but was unable to say what they were.

According to the Suffolk police website Bury St Edmunds Police Station is open from 8am to 8pm daily.

Robert Everitt, cabinet member for Bury St Edmunds and community safety on St Edmundsbury Borough Council, said: “We should probably treat their misfortune as a reminder we should all be safe.

“We should all consider the safety of our valuables and make sure we do lock our doors and windows because even the most secure buildings aren’t as secure as we like to think they are.”

He added: “I’m sure they are learning from their lessons and are extremely embarrassed about what’s happened.”

David Nettleton, vice-chairman of Bury St Edmunds Town Council, said he was “concerned” by what had happened and hoped when procedures were reviewed a full report would be published.

He said the first question to be asked was how was entry gained into the building.

Police had to investigate how an intruder managed to get into Felixstowe Police Station in June last year. He was detained under the mental health act.

n Ian Crosby, 31, of Ferneley Crescent, Newmarket, has been charged with burglary and two counts of criminal damage following the burglary at Bury St Edmunds Police Station.

He has been released by police to attend Bury St Edmunds Magistrates’ Court next Friday.


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