NOTTINGHAMSHIRE Police are trying a new tactic in tackling house thefts.
If you don’t lock your doors you may be in for a big surprise … in the shape of a police officer in your house!
Police are working in student areas to demonstrate how vulnerable some houses could be to opportunist burglars.
Officers will be trying doors and when they find an open one they will go in to find what valuables would be easy for the thieves to grab.
They will then wait and see how long it takes for the owner to discover they are in the house or leave a footprint leaflet where they have been.
It may be a shock to find police in your house, but look on the bright side, on this occasion it is not a burglar making off with your laptop, mobile and any other valuables.
By demonstrating how easy it is for opportunist thieves to get in and steal your stuff, it is hoped students will be more aware of keeping their properties locked up.
Items of value should never be left out on view, and never in easy reach of open windows or doors.
Make use of IMMOBILISE, a free, secure online database where you can store details of all your belongings. Police search Immobilise when recovering stolen or found property.
Give serious consideration to cost effective and deterrent marking of your property, such as CREMARK, which leaves visible marks. When out after dark or away during holidays, make your home look occupied by using timers on lamps and radios.
For further crime prevention information, why not visit the Nottinghamshire Police website and click on Crime Reduction.
Most importantly, lock internal and external doors and windows when you are out of the house. Keep front and back doors locked, even when you are in the house – it only takes a thief seconds to nip in, grab items and make off.
You can also sign up to receive local alerts in the area you live and tailored to students – visit www.neighbourhoodalert.co.uk and register (free of charge). In the Community Groups section, click on students.
Call 101 to report a crime. If a crime is in progress, life in danger or the offender is still nearby, use 999.