Thou­sands of Val­ley homes tar­geted twice by bur­glars

‘Fig­ures show a strong pos­si­bil­ity of peo­ple be­ing re­peat vic­tims’

Buckinghamshire Advertiser - - NEWS - By Joshua Smith buck­snews@trin­i­tysouth.co.uk

MORE than 4,500 homes in Thames Val­ley were bur­gled more than once be­tween 2008 and 2013.

Fig­ures from po­lice forces across Eng­land and Wales show that, over the five-year pe­riod, one in 10 bur­gled homes in the Thames Val­ley area had been tar­geted at least once be­fore.

The char­ity Vic­tim Sup­port and se­cu­rity com­pany ADT are work­ing to­gether on a cam­paign called Take No More, aimed at tack­ling bur­glary within the UK.

The pro­ject aims to pro­vide crime preven­tion schemes, in­crease aware­ness in sup­port ser­vices and help vic­tims get jus­tice in court.

Gail Hunter, spokesman for ADT, said: “Bur­glary can be a ter­ri­ble ex­pe­ri­ence and, dis­ap­point­ingly, the fig­ures show there is a strong pos­si­bil­ity of be­ing bur­gled again.

“Our aim is to de­ter bur­glars and give peo­ple peace of mind. We want to work with com­mu­ni­ties that have suf­fered high lev­els of bur­glary to of­fer crime preven­tion ad­vice and re­duce the risk of re­peat vic­tim­i­sa­tion.”

Karen Frog­gatt, a di­rec­tor at Vic­tim Sup­port, added: “Thou­sands of homes are be­ing blighted by bur­glar­ies. Get­ting bur­gled once can be dev­as­tat­ing, but to be bur­gled mul­ti­ple times is, un­der­stand­ably, ex­tremely dif­fi­cult for vic­tims to re­cover from.

“Vic­tims tell us they suf­fer far more than lost pos­ses­sions. They lose their sense of safety in their own homes.

“Re­peat vic­tim­i­sa­tion can have a long-last­ing and wide­spread im­pact on lives. That’s why it’s so im­por­tant that vic­tims of bur­glary can get prac­ti­cal help and have some­one to talk to when they do ex­pe­ri­ence this aw­ful crime.”

Thames Val­ley Po­lice of­fers ad­vice for all home­own­ers and works to re­duce bur­glary of­fences year on year.

“Do­mes­tic bur­glary is a dis­tress­ing and dev­as­tat­ing crime that can have a sig­nif­i­cant im­pact on the fam­ily,” said a spokesman for the force.

“It can take a long time to come to terms with the loss of per­sonal pos­ses­sions as well as the loss of con­fi­dence that a stranger has been in your home.

“Many bur­glars are op­por­tunist thieves look­ing for homes or busi­ness premises that of­fer them the least caught.

“The ma­jor­ity of bur­glar­ies can be pre­vented by tak­ing sim­ple se­cu­rity mea­sures.”

risk

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Ad­vice in­cludes house­hold­ers en­sur­ing doors and win­dows are al­ways se­cure and fit­ting alarms and se­cu­rity lights.

More in­for­ma­tion can be found at www. thames­val­ley. po­lice.uk/home-gar­dense­cu­rity.

Of the 43 po­lice forces asked for fig­ures, 25 re­sponded to the re­quest un­der the Free­dom of In­for­ma­tion Act.

Of those, Thames Val­ley had the fifth high­est num­ber of houses bur­gled more than once, and lay in 14th po­si­tion out of the 25 for the per­cent­age of ad­dresses with re­peat bur­glar­ies.

Bed­ford­shire Po­lice re­ported that in the six years from Jan­uary 2008 to De­cem­ber 2013, one prop­erty had been bur­gled on nine oc­ca­sions and 22 ad­dresses had been bur­gled five times each.

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