Make it hard for burglars
For those of you who wished for a long hot summer can I please ask you to stop wishing.
While I am enjoying the warmth my cows, as in two, are grizzling (apologies to the neighbours) and I am using up winter feed ahead of schedule.
Lucky I have a day job that is less reliant on the weather I suppose but to you real farmers out there I am feeling for you.
This month I would like to talk about dwelling burglary, that means our homes.
International and national surveys tell us that dwelling burglary is the crime that communities fear the most, for those of you who have been victims of this crime you will know the feeling and I am sure you would not wish it upon anyone.
Year to date Tokoroa is sitting on a 40 percent reduction in this crime type, this equates to 47 fewer crimes, Putaruru is down 16 crimes and Mangakino 10.
A total of 73 fewer homes have been broken into this year, for me that is awesome and I am extremely proud of these results.
Once again results do not come from luck, they come from hard work.
My wife, Lyn-marie and I have often said to our sons that it is funny how the harder we work the luckier they get, the joys of being a parent I suppose.
Anyway back to burglary and how we have achieved these results.
In the past police focussed on catching burglars, ‘‘Burglars On’’ (meaning a burglary in progress) was the highlight of your shift.
Upon receiving a call you had full licence to drive fast and if the burglar was stupid enough (or arguably you drove fast enough) you could catch him or her in the act – wow, job well done.
Now if you back up the bus a bit and think about a job well done wouldn’t it be better to not have the home broken into in the first place, no damage, no victim, no feelings of having your home violated and no police car speeding through town.
For us the focus is now firmly on prevention.
For the most we know who our burglars are and we focus our attention on them, letting them know we know if you like.
(As an aside we are always keen to know more about burglars and indeed any crooks in our towns so if you have any information whatsoever be in touch, if you want to do that anonymously please contact 0800 crimestoppers).
We know that burglars like to steal property that can be easily offloaded or is in demand so we focus on where they sell their ill-gotten gains. However the biggest success in relation to preventing burglary comes from what we call ‘‘target hardening’’.
This means removing the opportunity for some crook to get his or her thieving mitts on your property, locking doors and ensuring windows are secure, watching over the neighbours property when they are away and challenging anyone who turns up.
Alarms, security lights, cutting down trees or bushes all helps but the greatest deterrent comes from the community, that’s you and I.
If a burglar feels safe in our community they will stay in it and continue to commit crime (despite protests of ‘‘I have changed’’, yeah right), their actions will influence and educate their children who will in turn become burglars or thieves. ‘‘Monkey see, monkey do’’ is the analogy I think.
Not sure about you but I don’t want crooks in my community and I will continue to do all I can to make them feel unwelcome, please join me.
In closing this month I want to once again say drive safe, think safe and be safe, always.