Getting the community message across
South Tyneside residents signed up to community messaging have received advice on keeping their sheds secure.
Crime prevention advice to keep burglars and thieves at bay has been sent out to people who have opted to receive email alerts from South Tyneside Area Command.
This includes advice on securing your shed with locks, polycarbonate windows instead of glass with wire mesh and by fitting an alarm.
It also advises people to mark any property inside with a UV pen - this not only deters a thief but also gives a greater chance of it being returned to its rightful owner if stolen - as well as storing tools in a lockable steel box secured to the ground and using a decent lock and solid anchor point for bikes.
Neighbourhood Inspector Dave Hudson said: "We want as many people as possible to take on board practical crime prevention advice on keeping their sheds secure.
"Community messaging is another way of making sure the information goes out to our residents and another way for us to engage with people in a way that's more convenient for them.
"Most people don't realise the value of property stored in sheds and garages until it's stolen.
"Gardeners continue to store high value equipment such as tools, lawn mowers, power tools and bikes in sheds and outhouses without adequate security.
"I would ask the public to be more vigilant and take extra security measures in and around the garden - it's worth spending a little on simple security devices to save a lot in the future."
To sign up for free crime alerts via the community messaging system, contact 03456 043 043 extension 65933.
Drive away opportunist thieves
South Tyneside motorists are again being urged to follow crime prevention advice to drive away opportunist thieves.
The message comes following recent incidents of thefts from vehicles where sat navs have been stolen.
Now people are being urged to take more care with personal belongings in their vehicles.
Officers on patrol will also be taking a note of which vehicles have goods left on display and sending crime prevention advice by letter to the registered keepers of the vehicles.
The advice comes as part of Neighbourhood and Home Watch Week 2011 running from June 18 to 26 with the focus in the Northumbria Police force area on looking out for your neighbours; reporting any suspicious activity and remembering to lock windows and doors.
Neighbourhood Inspector Dave Hudson said: "Officers are patrolling to deter, target and apprehend thieves focusing on goods in cars.
"However, I would ask the public to play their part to combat this type of crime.
"If people take time to assess the security of their vehicle and follow some simple crime prevention advice, they will greatly reduce the risk of becoming the victim of opportunist thieves on the lookout for easy pickings from vehicles.
"As you leave your car, you should double check you have all your valuables with you, that you've left nothing on display and if you have to leave anything in your car, store it in the boot. Portable sat navs should also be removed fully when you park up.
"Motorists should think about the cost of the damage caused to their vehicle as well as the inconvenience of a break-in.
"By taking crime prevention steps, together with our continued enforcement activity and patrols we can continue to reduce car crime across the area."
Pedal power funds handed to charity
Funds raised by a Northumbria Police Inspector and South Tyneside youths have been handed over to charity.
Inspector Ian King and ten youths, aged 13 to 16, got on their bikes last October in aid of the Blue Lamp Foundation - a charity founded by Northumbria PC David Rathband to provide immediate financial support to emergency services personnel who have been injured in the line of duty as a result of a criminal act.
The youngsters are all part of the Youth Inclusion Programme - tailor-made programmes for eight to 17-year-olds who are at high risk of involvement in crime or anti-social behaviour in South Tyneside.
They were joined by South Tyneside Council detached youth workers Darren McCarty, Ray Whalen and Lea Bradwell to cycle a gruelling 26-miles around northern Europe's largest man-made lake, Kielder Water, in Northumberland.
The group raised £600 after taking part in the ride which was also aimed at further strengthening police links with local youngsters.
Insp King said: "The ride was a great success and we're extremely grateful for the support given by people who have helped us raise this money for the Blue Lamp Foundation. I know it will be put to a good cause.
"I'm pleased the youngsters enjoyed the challenge which gave us a perfect opportunity to listen to any issues they had and the chance to let them know about policing in the area.
"It was also encouraging to see how keen they were to get involved in the event for such a worthwhile cause."
South Tynesiders urged to secure their bikes
South Tyneside cyclists are again being reminded to secure their bikes and not leave themselves open to opportunist thieves.
A lot of residents are following crime prevention advice by locking their bikes when unattended and storing them securely at home.
However, police are still receiving reports of thefts after bikes are left in places such as gardens without any security.
Detective Inspector Chris Sybenga, from South Tyneside Area Command, said: "With the warmer weather upon us and lighter nights, more people are using their bikes.
"I understand people may feel tempted to leave it lying in the garden or against a wall but this is leaving it wide open to opportunist thieves who will take seconds to make off with it.
"I would urge people to get into the habit of locking their bike to something secure when they leave it unattended, even if it's only for a short time.
"Anything which makes it harder for thieves will reduce the risk of the bike being stolen in the first place.
"People spend a lot of money on bikes so it's worth spending that little bit more on buying a good quality lock and ensuring it's used.
"I'd also ask people to take a note of their bike's frame number and other details such as make and model to make it easier for it to be reunited with the owner if it is lost or stolen.
"It's also a good idea to property mark your bike with a UV pen."
Cyclists can also register their bike's details on the national property database Immobilise.
Vehicles seized as metal theft clampdown continues
Police in South Tyneside have seized a number of vehicles as officers continue to clampdown on metal theft across the borough.
Four people have also been arrested on suspicion of theft and bailed pending further enquiries.
The action has been carried out by officers from the East Shields Neighbourhood Policing Team in a bid to stop metal thieves in their tracks.
Some vehicles have been found to contain items for which there was no permission to take, including scrap metal. They have been seized and further enquiries are being carried out by officers.
Items such as washing machines, car parts, garden machinery and children's bikes have been found on vehicles, as well as lead flashing.
One vehicle recently stopped was found to have an industrial waste bin which was recovered by police and returned to the owner.
Shaun Connolly, East Shields Neighbourhood Sergeant, said: "As a result of rising metal prices, scrap metal left lying around is attracting thieves.
"Genuine scrap metal dealers will ask householders' permission to take any scrap metal and they should have official documents issued by the local authority.
"The activities of unregistered collectors has caught the attention of police and along with information from residents who are reporting the activity, they are being stopped by officers and the having their vehicles and the scrap they have taken without the owners permission seized."
As well as vehicles transporting metal, unroadworthy vehicles have also been stopped by police.
Officers seized a Ford Transit flat-bed tipper and issued a prohibition notice as the vehicle was found to be too dangerous to be used on the road and had no insurance.
The owner was reported for summons and made arrangements to have the vehicle scrapped.
Police will continue to target metal thieves and urge the public to contact them with any information.
Sgt Connolly added: "I would ask the public to continue to be vigilant and report any suspicious vehicles to police.
"I would also encourage people not to leave items lying around in gardens or yards and make arrangements with a reputable company to collect any unwanted scrap or speak to the local authority to see if they can assist."
People can contact police on 03456 043 043.
Patrols to tackle firestarters
Police are stepping up patrols to cut incidents of anti-social behaviour at a South Tyneside park.
In recent weeks, police have received reports of youths gathering at the park, on New Road, Boldon Colliery, drinking, littering and setting fires.
Officers from the Boldon Neighbourhood Policing Team have seized alcohol from youngsters and served Direction to Leave notices for anti-social behaviour which exclude individuals from an area for up to 48 hours. Anyone breaching the order faces arrest.
Extra police and Community Support Officer patrols will also be visiting the park, particularly on weekends when most incidents are reported.
Officers will also work with colleagues at the Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue to combat further incidents.
Simon Marshall, Acting Sergeant for the area, said: "Anti-social behaviour is an issue of concern to our communities as it can have a huge impact on their quality of life.
"Also, setting fires not only causes damage, which again has an impact on the community as everyone can see its effects, but it is an extremely dangerous act which could have serious consequences.
"Those involved need to realise how their behaviour can affect residents of neighbourhoods where they may actually live.
"We are working closely with the community and other agencies to make sure that incidents are responded to in the most appropriate way.
"Extra police on patrol will not only reassure members of the community but means officers are on hand to speak to individuals who are causing a nuisance and, where necessary, take appropriate action.
"We will continue to work together with partner agencies and the local community to find longer term solutions to make our communities even better places to live."
Picture courtesy Shields Gazette
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Northumbria Police are now adding local information to our Facebook pages.
This gives you the opportunity to keep up to date with local news and events, and is another way to find out more about what we are doing in your local area.
We are also posting regular news updates and upcoming events to our Twitter feeds.
To join and take advantage of any of these FREE services please use the links below:
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If you'd like to meet and speak to your local neighbourhood officer you can also come along to an informal police drop-in surgery where you can talk to your local neighbourhood officer about any policing concerns or to ask crime prevention advice. Check out forthcoming dates by logging on to the force website.
Look out for the Partners and Communities Together (PACT) meetings across South Tyneside, where members of the community are invited to meet with their local officers and discuss any policing concerns. These meetings, publicised on the force website, help residents to know who their local officer is and how to contact them. Representatives from the local authority will also be present to deal with your queries.
We also need your help in continuing to make South Tyneside a safe place to live, work and visit. If you see anything suspicious or have any concerns then get in touch by phoning 03456 043 043 ext 69191 and asking to speak to your local neighbourhood policing team. You can also Email us or call in to your local police station:
South Shields Police Station
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