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Senior police officer praises burglary drop in Darlington
A SENIOR police officer said he is delighted with statistics showing a sharp reduction in the number of burglaries in Darlington and urged the public to continue to be vigilant.
Figures released by Darlington Police show that house burglaries in the town have dropped 21 per cent in the last year, while crimes classed as 'burglary other', which include garages and outhouses, are down 19 per cent.
Chief Inspector Chris Reeves, neighbourhood policing manager for the town, said the drop in burglaries showed the hard work of his officers to track burglars and the importance of schemes such as Neighbourhood Watch.
The force said it is keen to see the downward trend in burglaries continue and warned that the risk of break-ins will increase as the dark nights start to draw in.
Homeowners have been advised to use timer systems on their lights and to ensure all doors, windows, gates and outbuildings are securely locked at all times.
Ch Insp Reeves said: “When you consider that we’ve got a population of about 100,000 people in Darlington and up to 40,000 properties, the fact that we have only one burglary a day in the town is incredible.
“That’s partly down to good policing work in identifying offenders and getting them before the courts but also because of the good work by Neighbourhood Watch and residents who alert our officers to suspicious activity.
“As the dark nights draw in we will get more burglaries, which is purely because burglars don’t want to burgle houses when people are in them.
"In the summer it’s hard to tell if someone’s in, but in winter if a house is all in darkness at 6pm it’s a good indication that everyone is out.
“That’s why it’s important for people to use timers on their lights. These figures are superb and we want to keep it that way.”
A crime prevention event, with advice about securing homes and properties, will be held at the Cornmill Centre on Thursday, October 25, between 1pm and 5pm. Information is also available from local Neighbourhood Watch schemes.