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Police in Portsmouth are issuing a crime prevention reminder following a spike in the number of burglaries.
There were fifteen reports of burglaries of note at homes across the city between Christmas Eve and Thursday, December 30, including one on Christmas Day.
Officers are reminding people to keep their doors and windows securely locked and to make it seem like someone’s home even if you’re out.
Ten homes across the Fratton sector were targeted, particularly around Copnor and North End and Kingston. On Christmas Day, someone got into a house home on Monmouth Road, Hilsea, early evening and took presents from under the Christmas tree including children’s books and a salt and pepper shaker.
Three homes in Southsea were targeted over the long weekend, but the burglars were unable to get passed the front doors which were securely locked from the inside.
Three cars were stolen in the Drayton area as burglars took the keys in two burglaries on Beaconsfield Avenue and Gofton Avenue.
Crime Prevention Detective Sergeant Tony Lewis from the Burglary Investigation team said:
“On average, there’s only around two burglaries per day in Portsmouth, which is a low number given the size of the city. This current peak over Christmas appears to be an unusual spike.
“We put out a lot of crime prevention messages in the run-up to Christmas Day and now is a good time to again remind people how they can make their home safer.
“Leaving doors and windows open and unlocked is still one of the main ways burglars are able to get into a home.
“In Southsea, we had three attempted breaks and on one occasion a good, strong lock on the door proved they couldn’t get any further.
“Lock your doors and windows even if you’re just heading upstairs, into the garden or the back of the house.
“Simple things like leaving a radio on, or using a timer switch on the lights, to make it look like someone’s in will make your house safer because it will make a potential burglar think twice.
“Three cars have been taken in burglaries in the Cosham period, so when you go to bed, don’t leave your car keys on view; taken them with you.
“There’s another bank holiday weekend coming up for New Year so please take on this advice especially if you’re going out for the night or away for a few days.”
For more crime prevention advice, download our Safer Homes leaflet.
DS Lewis continued: “Our investigations are focussing on these three trend areas. We’re looking at a number of lines of enquiry for each, including forensics, to trace the offenders.
“As part of that investigation, we’d like to hear from anyone who saw anyone acting suspiciously around these streets over the Christmas period.
“In Fratton, for example, we’d like to hear from people who may have spotted someone jumping over a wall into a back garden which is one of the ways the burglars have been using to get into a home.”
Anyone with information about any of these burglaries should contact the Burglary Investigation team at Fratton police station on 101 or the anonymous Crimestoppers charity on 0800 555 111.