January 2013

Newsletter 92

Dear Neighbour

It has again been a typically quiet quarter although there have been three crimes too many on our estates.

BruntonPark.

September: - Theft of lawnmower on the 14th between 01:00 and 04:30 in Greenfield Road, where it was left out of view, behind a car on a driveway.

October: Nothing reported

November: ­- Burglary dwelling in Grenville Drive on Monday 26th between 08:30 and 18:45, when the offenders approached the front door, forced it before entering the dwelling and stealing from within.

MeltonPark.

September: - Nothing Reported.

October: - Theft, on Sunday 14th. Victim got a taxi home and needed to go inside to get the fare. The driver demanded the victim’s mobile phone as security, then, when the victim went in to get the fare, the taxi driver drove off with the phone.

November: - Nothing reported

In the surrounding area, there have been burglaries to garages in Heathery Lane and WhitebridgePark, along with a burglary to a dwelling on WhitebridgePark. There have also been burglaries to two dwellings on the GreatPark.

In other areas, there have been a number of burglaries where offenders are entering houses to steal various items including car keys. Please keep all entrance and exit doors locked to prevent this happening, even when you are at home. The criminal can be in and out in a flash and you might never know until you come to look for your keys in that pot in the hallway and then discover that your car

Is no longer on the drive! So, we have had three crimes locally, two of which were avoidable, (which is always easy to say after the event). Please lock away any equipment, gardening or otherwise, which you may have used. I know that ‘scrap’ collectors can come round very early indeed and whilst they can perform a useful service by removing old radiators etc, they have never been noted for their honesty in my experience. They seem generally unable or unwilling to discriminate between items intended for disposal and shiny new bicycles for example.

Taxis

In the past, I have attended incidents where someone has got out of a taxi to go and get the fare and has then run off/barricaded themselves in a house. Basically, they get locked up and charged if caught with, Making Off Without Payment.

That, however, does not give a taxi driver any authority to demand any kind of security whatsoever. If you find yourself in this position, refuse and invite them to call the Police. As long as it is your intention to pay the fare, you are not acting unlawfully.

Your phone is likely to be much more valuable than the taxi fare, so please do not part with it under any circumstances. In this case it seems that the victim must not have known which taxi firm they used, so finding the culprit is like looking for a needle in a haystack.

Taxi drivers have been warned by police about adopting this approach with passengers.

Crime Mapping

The Northumbria Police website contains links to the national crime maps. Enter your postcode, town or street name to get street-level crime and outcomes maps and data, and details of your local policing team and beat meetings.

Christmas and New Year

Please remember to have a timer switch in use, ready to come on when it gets dark. Try and make your home look as if it is occupied. Ask a neighbour to shut curtains for you whether you are just away for 1 day or going on holiday. I have attended burgled homes on Christmas Day and it is most distressing for the occupants. Burglars don’t rest, will look for the easy option and will not be likely to try and break in if they think there is someone at home. If you are going to be away on holiday or if you are at work, ask a neighbour to bring your bin in. A bin on the street is a clear signal that a house may be temporarily unoccupied.

Finally, my best wishes to everyone for a Merry Christmas and a crime free, happy and prosperous New Year.

Ian Peden.