Published: October 16, 2011
20% jump in car break-ins prompts warning from Burnham Police

Burnham-On-Sea police have this week warned residents not to leave valuables on display in parked vehicles following a big rise in car break-ins.

New figures show the number of such incidents in the Somerset West police area - which covers Burnham, Highbridge, Brent Knoll and Brean - has risen by approximately 20% this year.

Local police are therefore appealing to the public to do more to prevent the thefts occurring.

Superintendent Trevor Margenout told "I am sad to say that we have seen an increase this year of approximately 20% of theft from cars, which means an extra 92 victims of crime."

"I urge the public to help us bring these crime levels back down by making sure they don't leave things on display in the car."

"It isn't just sat navs, phones or other electronic items that need to be out of sight – that old coat on the back seat may be worthless, but a thief won't know if you've left money or cards in the pocket or not. Don't create temptation."

He continued: "Having your car broken in to is not just an inconvenience, once you have gone through the disruption of having your car repaired and the insurance process, most of the time it leaves you out of pocket as the excess is normally more than the value of the goods stolen."

"I would also like to remind people not to help create a market in which thieves can operate. Buying a cheap sat nav' for £20 from someone in the pub usually means it's either broken or stolen. Either way you don't want it."

"If you buy stolen property not only are you creating a market or a reason for thieves to steal and fuelling car crime but you are also breaking the law and could be arrested for handling stolen goods."

Across the district, local officers have increased both high-visibility and plain clothes patrols to target car thieves. Police are also deploying their covert capture cars to catch thieves red-handed. first reported here in July how an increase in car break-ins was concerning police.

If you should see someone acting suspiciously, he report this to the police using the 999 number or to Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.


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