The Matlock Safer Neighbourhood Team have issued advice to residents of the town after a recent rise in garage thefts.
A Facebook post by the team read: “Many people don’t secure their shed or garage in the same way they do their homes – often using an easy-to-break lock or padlock to protect valuable contents such as a car, bike or lawnmower.
“An opportunistic burglar will try a shed or garage first because they can find the tools they need to break into the main house.”
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The SNT recommended that people try to “think like a thief” – considering how you would break into your own property, and whether there are any vulnerabilities that need to be addressed.
They said that garages and sheds should always be locked and alarmed, and if possible, CCTV should be installed. Items inside should also be locked away or secured with a chain. The team advised draping an old sheet or blanket over the top of mowers or bikes to keep them covered from view.
Marking items was also recommended – whether painting tools with your name and postcode, or opting for forensic marking.
Any incidents can be reported to Derbyshire Police using one of the below methods:
Facebook – send a private message to /DerbyshireConstabulary
Twitter – direct message the force’s contact centre on @DerPolContact
Website – complete the online contact form
Phone – call 999 if the incident is taking place – otherwise, call 101
You can also anonymously contact Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.