Police in Thirsk are urging residents to ensure they lock their doors and windows following a spate of sneak-in burglaries.
Over the last few weeks, the Hambleton estate area has been targeted by opportunist thieves who have entered homes through insecure doors and windows and stolen cash and personal items which, in many cases, have been easily visible through the windows.
The latest two incidents occurred overnight on the 24 - 25 July, and during one of them, thieves took a jar full of change and a purse from a handbag.
Officers have carried out house-to-house enquiries in the neighbourhood, but are also appealing for anyone who saw any suspicious people or vehicles in the area, or has any other information to contact them.
Sergeant Frances Hannan of Thirsk Safer Neighbourhood Team, said: "It's really tempting to leave windows open during the hot weather, but please remember to only do this in rooms which you are occupying and can easily see if anyone is around. Remember to lock all your doors and windows when you go out, or go to bed. Please don't leave any tempting valuables such as handbags or purses on view where they can be easily seen from your window or doors.
"Thirsk is a safe, low-crime area, but thieves are always on the look-out for easy targets, and if you give them an opportunity to steal, they will take it. The more obstacles you put in their way, the less likely they are to strike.
"Remember also, to always lock ladders and tools away at night or anything which can assist a thief to gain access to your home."
Anyone with any information about the burglaries is asked to contact North Yorkshire Police on 101, or you can pass information anonymously to Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.
More than a third of all burglaries are crimes of opportunity, where the burglar enters through unlocked doors or windows. Keep your home secure.
According to the Home Office, you are ten times more likely to be burgled if you don't have basic security - even something as simple as putting strong locks on your doors and windows will keep your house much safer.
Nationwide, burglary has fallen by nearly 60% since 1995 - but criminals are opportunists who will take advantage of any chance to steal from you, so you should remain aware.
If you want to be certain your home is as safe as you can make it, here are ten top tips you should follow:
Fit strong locks to external doors and windows, and make sure they are locked at all times.
Always remove all keys from inside locks, and keep them out of sight and in a safe place.
Fit sturdy deadlocks (British Standard BS3621) to all doors.
Make sure your doors and frames are strong and in good condition - wood doors should be at least 44mm thick.
Mark your property - having it marked helps police verify it's been stolen.
Fit a door chain or bar and door viewer (spy-hole), and use them.
Never leave a spare key in a convenient hiding place such as under the doormat, in a flowerpot or behind a loose brick - thieves know to look there first.
When you are out in the evening, leave your lights on and shut the curtains.
Install outside security lighting; if other people can see your property a burglar may think twice.
Keep your tools and ladders securely locked up - a burglar could use them to get into your house.
26 July 2012