Cold June bur­glary rate down

The Tribune (NZ) - - YOUR LOCAL NEWS - RICHARD MAYS

Cold and crime don’t ap­pear to go to­gether. That’s if Palmer­ston North’s re­cent house­hold bur­glary fig­ures are any­thing to go by.

It may be cold com­fort for those who have been bro­ken into, but the low­ered tem­per­a­tures seem to be keep­ing the house-break­ers at bay.

For the first week of July, only 10 bur­glar­ies were re­ported, ac­cord­ing to de­tails pro­vided by Neigh­bour­hood Sup­port.

Palmer­ston North’s act­ing Neigh­bour­hood Sup­port field of­fi­cer Marja Walt­mann said the week had the low­est amount of re­ported res­i­den­tial break-ins so far this year.

There had been a grad­ual de­cline in the num­ber of res­i­den­tial bur­glar­ies since the end of April.

At that time, the city was av­er­ag­ing 30 breakins a week.

Walt­mann said, anec­do­tally, there would be a de­cline in bur­glar­ies over win­ter, with the breakin rate climb­ing as the weather warms and the countdown to Christ­mas com­mences.

She said that the Neigh­bour­hood Sup­port fig­ures were for bur­glar­ies re­ported in a week and some may have hap­pened ear­lier, for ex­am­ple when some­one had re­turned from hol­i­day and dis­cov­ered their house ran­sacked.

Po­lice said the fig­ures were no cause for com­pla­cency.

‘‘Thieves op­er­ate at all times of the year and in all weather con­di­tions,’’ said In­spec­tor Dave White.

He wasn’t pre­pared to put the low bur­glary rate down to in­creased po­lice ef­fec­tive­ness, and stressed the need for house­hold­ers to con­tinue tak­ing pre­cau­tions.

He said po­lice have been re­ceiv­ing calls re­cently about sus­pi­cious door knock­ers.

‘‘These peo­ple nor­mally use the ex­cuse that they are look­ing for a per­son you have never heard of, or a sim­i­lar such story.

‘‘Of­ten these peo­ple are look­ing for an un­oc­cu­pied house to break into.’’

Res­i­dents should never let these peo­ple into their homes and should con­tact po­lice im­me­di­ately, he said.

Thefts of and from cars how­ever, con­tin­ued to be a prob­lem in the city.

Do­mes­tic bur­glar­ies are down, but break-ins con­tinue to be a bane of city life.

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