Keep your home safe and secure this summer
Dated: 25 Apr 2012
Police in Gateshead are urging householders to ensure their homes are safe and secure as warmer weather and lighter nights approach.
Opportunist thieves like to take advantage as more people open their windows and doors.
But this provides an open invitation for thieves who only take a second to come through an unlocked door on the look out for small, easily taken items.
Officers are warning homeowners to ensure their doors and windows are locked, and that valuables - in particular car keys - are out of sight.
Gateshead South Neighbourhood Inspector Paul Hamilton said: "During the summer months we have instances where valuables, including car keys, have been grabbed after being left within easy reach of open or unlocked doors.
"On other occasions, offenders have burgled homes after sneaking in through unlocked doors. It's important people secure their homes, even when they are inside, only if going out for a few moments or are in the garden, and particularly overnight, to reduce the risk of falling victim to such a crime.
"It's also good practice to not leave valuables on display close to windows and doors. Residents should also report any suspicious activity to police so we can investigate."
Other advice includes considering fitting an alarm and outside security lighting as well as using timer lights for lights and radios if going out.
Anyone with information about crime and disorder in their area is asked to contact police on 03456 043 043 ext 69191, or alternatively Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.