Police appeal for public’s help after 50 burglaries are linked in Suffolk
PUBLISHED: 15:16 06 February 2019 | UPDATED: 12:25 07 February 2019
Detectives are appealing to local communities to help them put an end to a series of more than 50 burglaries across west Suffolk.
Operation Hepworth was launched by Suffolk police in response to 56 break-ins which date back to October 2018 and officers are now appealing for residents to be their ‘eyes and ears’ to help catch those responsible for the crimes.
The burglaries have predominantly taken place in Newmarket, Mildenhall, Haverhill and surrounding areas and are being linked by police due to the similarities in their nature.
The break-ins usually occur between 5pm in the afternoon and 9pm in the evening, involve forced entry to the property, with the perpetrators looking to take jewellery and cash.
Although officers are following a number of leads in pursuit of the burglars, police are appealing for local communities to be on the look-out for any suspicious behaviour in their neighbourhoods and not to disregard persons or vehicles that appear unusual or out of place.
Detective Inspector Tam Burgess, of West CID in Bury St Edmunds, said: “This is an alarming amount of burglaries, causing misery and distress to a vast number of individuals and families across the county.
“We are pursuing a number of lines of enquiry in relation to them, but the vital key to catching these criminals could be provided by a member of the public.
“My direct appeal to local communities is to not just ignore something you see or hear that seems out of place.
“This could include a suspicious vehicle outside your neighbour’s house or hearing the sound of glass smashing nearby.
“Note down the car registration number or description of any suspicious persons you may have seen and report it to us if you believe it to be unusual.”
As the majority of the burglaries in this series involve houses being entered by force rather than because of insecurities, detectives are highlighting the importance of community intelligence in helping to apprehend the offenders.
They would urge people to get involved with Neighbourhood Watch as it is a vital resource for preventing crime. The presence of Neighbourhood Watch signs provide a strong warning that criminals are entering an area where people look out for one another.
Anyone who believes they are witnessing a crime in progress should call 999 immediately. Members of the public with information that is not a crime in progress are asked to either email OpHepworth@suffolk.pnn.police.uk or call West CID on 101.