Police Warning After Spate Of Burglaries

Thieves steal keys through the letterboxes

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Police across Wimbledon are warning householders to pay attention to home security after a spate of burglaries in Raynes Park.

Two of the thefts involved "letterbox burglaries" where the thieves managed to access keys which were inside the homes, near the letterboxes.

The first "letterbox burglary" took place in Pendarves Road, Raynes Park, where the keys to the property were left on a bureau near the front door. The thieves got into the house and stole a handbag.

The second incident was in Stanton Road, Raynes Park, where the home owner's car keys were taken from a table near the front door. The thieves then drove off in the car.

In Trewince Road a suspect was interupted by a next-door neighbour after he was carrying a stolen TV over the garden fence. He left the TV in the garden and ran off. The thief had got into the property by forcing a bathroom sash window open.

In Coombe Lane a single-glazed window was removed from the frame, giving the thieves access to the home. They took a computer, video games, games consoles, jewellery and money.

There has been a recent residential burglary in Colliers Wood where the intruder entered through an insecure window.

The Raynes Park Safer Neighbourhoods Team have also had reports of side gates being tampered with.

Detective Superintendent Martin Rusling, head of the Met's anti-burglary task force Operation Bumblebee, said: "Over half of all burglaries occur through the front door. Mostly they are forced, but many are simply opened either from the front, or by putting something through the letter box.

"It's easy to leave your front door unlocked, especially when you're in a hurry or distracted. But even if you only do it once, that could be enough to get burgled."

Sergeant Dan Wheatley, of Raynes Park Safer Neighbourhoods Team, added: "Our team's message is simple always double lock your premises before you leave and close all windows. Secure ladders and bins away from your properties so they cannot be used as climbing aids. Use a timer switch to activate internal lighting during periods of darkness. If you see something suspicious act on your gut feeling and call the police."

October 1, 2010