Vacant homes a burglar’s dream
Christmas is a time for giving, but for would-be burglars it is also a prime time to take.
Karratha police Senior Sergeant Geoff Cramp said opportunistic burglaries in the area increased over the holidays and residents should be vigilant.
“Karratha has a history showing a significant rise in burglary and property crime during December and January,” he said.
“I believe this is mainly due to the large number of persons on holidays.”
Karratha resident Dan Pedersen knows firsthand what it feels like to come home and find you have been burgled.
Last month thieves broke into his family’s house.
“Our home, our family’s safe place, had been violated,” he said.
“(We) felt unsafe in our own home for the first time.”
Whether you are leaving or staying in town, here are some tips to prevent a burglary:
■ Let trusted friends or neighbours know you are going away and ask them to keep an eye on your house.
■ Burglars usually enter through unlocked doors or windows, so ensure your house, garage and car are securely locked.
■ Ask friends or neighbours to bring in your rubbish bin. A bin out on a day it shouldn’t be is a clue for burglars.
■ Leave a light on inside the house to give the impression someone is home.
■ Install a sensor light or security cameras outside and consider getting a dog to deter trespassers.
■ Have valuable items engraved, keep their receipts and back up important information on computers.
Senior Sergeant Cramp said residents staying over Christmas played a major role in preventing crime.
“If someone or something appears out of place, tell the police because you are our eyes and ears.” Mr Pedersen agreed. “The only reason these thieves (of our house) were found was due to a community member reporting suspicious behaviour,” he said.
If you see something suspicious, call 000 for emergencies, 131 444 for assistance or Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.
Karratha police Constables Ash Netterfield, Shane Price and Nat Hayes are ready to crack down on burglaries this Christmas.