Ipswich: Sharp rise in vehicle crime

POLICE in a Suffolk town have warned motorists to keep their cars, vans and lorries secure at all times after vehicle crime rocketed.

Between September and November there were 299 reports of theft from vehicles in Ipswich compared to 198 during the same period last year – an increase of 50%.

Over the coming weeks officers in Ipswich will be conducting dedicated covert and overt patrols around the town, in areas considered recent ‘hotspots’ where they have seen a higher than normal level of car crime.

Detective Inspector Angus Moir, of the Territorial Support Team, said: “Anything left on view in a vehicle is inviting to a criminal. We rely heavily on information received from the public. Not only are we asking people to be more vigilant about their car security but we would also like to hear from anyone who notices suspicious activity around vehicles.”

Items with serial numbers, like mobile phones, sat-navs and stereos, can be registered with Immobilise – www.immobilise.com.

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This national database is used by most police forces, including Suffolk.

In addition, property should be marked. Safer Neighbourhood Teams and Neighbourhood Watch groups often hold property-marking events, or kits can be purchased to do it yourself.

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Motorists are advised to:

n Lock the doors and close the windows when you leave the car, even for a short time.

n Don’t leave anything on display.

n Remove the stereo/CD player/chargers/sat nav cradles if you can, put the aerial down, and tuck in the wing mirrors to discourage vandals.

n Never store your car’s documents in the car.

n An approved immobiliser/steering lock can help secure older vehicles.

n Think about having the windows etched with the car’s registration number.

n Make a note of the chassis number.

n Keep your car keys in a safe place.

n Park in a garage if you have one or in a well-lit public place.

To contact Suffolk police with information call 01473 613500 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111. If anyone sees a crime in progress they should call 999 immediately.”

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