Suffolk: Burglaries rise to three-year high - but PCC vows to deploy more frontline officers
- Credit: Andrew Partridge
HOUSE burglaries have risen to their highest level for at least three years but police last night vowed to tackle the problem with a blitz on criminals.
Figures reveal there were more than 210 domestic raids across Suffolk in January, compared with 180 a year earlier.
It is believed the burglars are targeting the county because of good road links which make escaping the scene easier.
Speaking to the EADT last night, Suffolk Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) Tim Passmore said the increase was unacceptable and firm action to catch the thieves had been launched.
He said: “There is considerable evidence that people are travelling into Suffolk from outside the county and are largely responsible for this.”
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It is believed people have been travelling in from across the border in Cambridge and even as far afield as Essex and London and some potentially prolific offenders may be involved.
Mr Passmore said a series of successful intelligence-led raids were carried out in the Forest Heath area. He added: “The large increase has been mainly in the western half of the county as opposed to the eastern half.
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“We are putting more resources in and this means deploying more staff and frontline officers. There is also a lot of detective work going on.”
But the figures discussed at yesterday’s first PCC accountability and performance panel, also revealed a 6.6% reduction in the number of domestic burglaries in Suffolk from April 2012 to January 2013. There were 1,549 compared to 1,659 the previous year.
A Suffolk Police spokeswoman said: “The number of recorded burglaries in Suffolk has reduced over the past year, which is in line with overall crime for the county.
“A top priority for the force is reducing the number of burglaries being committed, and also improving on our ‘solved rate’ for these offences.
“We have a dedicated action plan and a force-wide operation, named Operation Drawbridge, in place, with the aim of preventing and detecting these crimes.”
She added that the force’s intelligence unit works with regional police colleagues to share information, carry out regular pro-active operations and target prolific offenders and those suspected of being involved in burglaries.
“Crime scene investigators attend the scene of every dwelling burglary, ensuring that all forensic opportunities are captured, and our automatic number plate recognition teams are monitoring vehicles on the roads every day, stopping any vehicles suspected of being connected to criminal activity,” she said.
“Alongside this, we are continuing to raise awareness of the importance of home security and crime prevention amongst members of the public.
“We are encouraging communities to provide police with any information they have on suspected burglars in their area, which could prove vital in helping us prevent further offending.”
Visit www.suffolk.police.uk for advice and anyone with information in relation to burglaries should call Suffolk Police on 101.