Residents are urged to keep property safe

Residents are being reminded to take steps to keep burglars at bay after a check on homes found large numbers were insecure.

Police have been carrying out patrols in Wallsend to showpeople of crime prevention steps to keep homes secure as the darker nights set in.

In one operation a police community support officer (PCSO) visited residents across four streets and found 70 homes were insecure.

Residents are being given leaflets advising them a foot in the door is all thieves need.

Since August 1, there has been 24 burglaries in Wallsend, with 18 happening after doors had been left unlocked or windows open.

Neighbourhood Inspector Neil Armsworth said: “Over recent months 75 per cent of all burglaries reported to us have happened after doors and windows have been left open.

“We know opportunist thieves will walk down a street and try door handles until they find one that’s open and it’s vital residents take steps to protect their homes.

“Local officers have been carrying out operations during the onset of darker nights to check on people’s properties and have found a large number insecure. ”

Burglary is down 26 per cent in Wallsend so far this year when compared to the same period last year – 20 fewer offences.

Insp Armsworth added: “We continue to do everything possible to target known burglars and ensure they are dealt with and we’ve seen reductions in burglary in Wallsend so far this year.

“But one burglary is still one too many and preventing them from happening in the first place is our priority. This time of year historically sees an increase in offences and it’s important we make sure residents have the right advice to keep their homes secure.”