Police are stepping up warnings on winter burglaries as Christmas approaches so residents can cut the risk of being targeted by thieves.
Nationally burglaries rise by 63 per cent during winter months, according to security specialists Yale, who say: “Darker nights mean lighter fingers.”
House burglaries in South Holland saw a 26.5 per cent fall – with 41 fewer break-ins – in the year to date compared to the same period in 2012.
But police are still advising residents to cut their risk of becoming a victim.
Crime reduction officer PC Ian Greenshields says dark nights offer criminals more cover.
He said: “Poorer visibility makes offenders feel as though they can move around without being spotted or seen – this can increase the number of offences being committed.
“A common aspect of why a particular property in a street may be targeted is when it is left in darkness, which makes it appear unoccupied.”
He suggests residents take simple steps to avoid being a target:
n Use timers so lights and a radio come on as darkness falls – several timers give the impression of a resident moving around the home
n Close and lock all windows and doors
n Don’t leave valuables on display near windows (such as jewellery, laptops and Christmas presents)
n Lock away garden items that burglars could use to break into your home – move bins to the back garden as burglars may climb onto them to gain access
n Cancel milk and papers if you go away
For more information on beating the burglar and Christmas crime visit www.lincs.police.uk, call 101 and ask to speak to your crime reduction officer or email firstname.lastname@example.org