Burglaries up, police warn

2016-05-17 06:00

Grassy Park police confirmed there has been an increase in house burglaries and theft out of motor vehicles in the precinct.

They have urged residents to be vigilant and to take precautions at their properties.

Grassy Park police spokesperson Warrant Officer Wynita Kleinsmith says activity has been on the increase in their precinct in recent weeks.

“There has been an increase of house burglaries and theft out of motor vehicles in our precincts in all sectors. Different instruments are used to gain entry to the premises,” she says.

A recent posting on social media has also alerted residents to be vigilant for a crowbar gang in the Ottery, Wetton and Plumstead areas.

The post details that burglaries at premises are done in “under two minutes”.

The post reads: “Crow bar gang activity on the increase in the Ottery, Wetton and Plumstead areas. Due to the success rate of this type of home burglary, being that they operate in under two minutes in most cases, we have seen a huge increase of this crime occurring daily in our neighbourhoods. Gates and doors are being broken through with crow bars and sledge hammers leaving the premises without a single flat screen by the time they leave. We advise that where possible you install outdoor beams between the front boundary wall and the house, as well as consider locking down your flat screens with some kind of lockable bracket to create a delay.”

Kleinsmith says they can’t confirm that the burglaries can be linked to a crowbar gang. “We can’t confirm if it is related to a crow bar gang as cases are still under investigation. Grassy Park police are appealing to the community to inform us of suspicious vehicle and strangers roaming the area.”

Police have also urged residents to establish neighbourhood watches and street committees, and to keep in contact with neighbours by forming WhatsApp chat groups.

Police say residents shouldn’t leave their homes an “open invitation to burglars”.

This includes leaving doors unlocked or secured with “cheap and easy to break” locks.

Open windows – especially where it seems too small for an average sized adult to enter – and accumulated newspapers and letters advertise that no-one is home.

Bushes around entry gates also make an ideal hiding place for criminals,” Kleinsmith says.

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