Lock up your dogs, red rib­bon thieves in Roma

The Western Star - - NEWS -

THIEVES are us­ing red rib­bons to mark Roma homes they might later tar­get to steal the dog on the premises or to break in.

Last week, mem­bers of the Cos­grove fam­ily were leav­ing for work on Fri­day morn­ing when they found a rib­bon on their fence.

Hollie Cos­grove said her mum found the rib­bon last week on Fri­day morn­ing be­fore work about 5am.

“We were feel­ing a bit of shock,” she said.

“As we never pic­tured our home to be picked for what that rib­bon means.

“The rib­bon was on the front gate of our yard, quite hid­den and hard to no­tice.”

It is claimed it is a com­mon tac­tic for thieves to place the rib­bon on thte fence of a home that they will later re­turn to when no one is home to ei­ther break in or steal the dog.

The Cos­grove fam­ily un­for­tu­nately ex­pe­ri­enced it last night.

“We had some­one at the front of our house last night with a torch look­ing into our yard,” she said.

“It was hec­tic, I looked through my win­dow and the thief was lit­er­ally at the front with a torch.

“Steal­ing peo­ple’s fam­ily an­i­mals is com­pletely wrong, they’re meant to feel safe in their own home.

“There’s a fence there for a rea­son, to keep them safe.”

Roma Po­lice Sergeant Cian Jacobs said res­i­dents needed to stay vig­i­lante.

“We have not re­ceived any re­ports, but just like with any other piece of prop­erty, make sure you lock it up,” he said.

A Roma res­i­dent who would pre­fer not be named said she ex­pe­ri­enced dog theft only last year.

“I have pre­vi­ously had one on my fence, about a year and half ago,” she said.

“Peo­ple came four nights in a row to take my dogs but they were un­suc­cess­ful.

“A night or two later they came back and smashed up my car win­dows.”

It is im­por­tant to re­port the in­ci­dent to the po­lice as soon as pos­si­ble; this can pre­vent valu­able ev­i­dence from be­ing lost or de­stroyed. It may also help them catch the of­fender and pre­vent an­other per­son from be­ing harmed.

If it is an emer­gency or the crime is hap­pen­ing at the time, phone 000. If it not an emer­gency and the crime has al­ready hap­pened, phone Po­licelink on 131 444, or re­port it to Crime Stop­pers on 1800 333 000.

PHOTO: HOLLIE COS­GROVE

RED RIB­BON: Hollie Cos­grove holds the rib­bon that was tied to her gate.

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