Car owners urged to stay secure
Dated: 07 Feb 2010
Police are urging motorists to secure their vehicles after a spate of thefts in Newcastle City Centre.
Goods worth hundreds of pounds - including satellite navigation systems - have been stolen recently. In many cases the items have been left on display so have fallen victim to opportunist thieves.
Over the past few weeks, there's been incidents at Terrace Place, Eldon Gardens and the Great North Museum where sat navs were stolen after being left on display, while number plates were stolen from a car parked at Richardson Road recently.
Now Northumbria Police is reminding motorists in the area to put safety first when parking their vehicles.
Neighbourhood Sergeant Paul Hamilton said: "These thefts are often the work of opportunist thieves and it's a timely reminder for all motorists to ensure their vehicles are secure at all times.
"People should make sure valuable items are taken with them or lock them away out of sight. With sat nav systems, it's important no wires are left lying around and that sucker marks are cleaned off the windscreen or dashboard.
"We're doing all we can to find the people responsible for the thefts while also trying to prevent them from happening in the first place. Drivers can help us by taking these crime prevention steps."
Theft from motor vehicles across Newcastle area command has reduced by 28% so far this year - that's 500 fewer victims - and in the city centre it's down more than 46% - that's almost 100 fewer victims.
Sgt Hamilton added: "While we've seen some excellent results we're not complacent and will continue to work hard to reduce vehicle crime even further.
"By following some crime prevention advice, motorists can help us put a stop to this recent spate of opportunist thefts."
Security tips to prevent vehicle crime include:
always lock your vehicle, even if it's just for a few seconds
think about where you are parking it - look for busy, well-lit spots and secure parking facilities
fit a good alarm and warning stickers
fit anti-theft devices including steering locks - opportunist thieves will try to find an easier target.
don't leave anything on display which could tempt a thief - put valuables in the boot of the car and lock it
don't leave sat nav sucker marks or power leads on display
report any suspicious activity to police