Police are appealing to residents of Uttlesford to be extra vigilant following a number of burglaries across the district.

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Seventeen houses were broken into between Thursday, December 1, and Friday, December 13, with small electrical items and jewellery being taken.

In most cases entry was via forcing rear patio doors or windows.

The majority of these offences are occurring during the hours of daylight, when homes are left unoccupied.

Crime reduction advisor for the district, Peter Caulfield said that although Uttlesford and Braintree Districts enjoys some of the lowest crime rates in the county, residents cannot afford to be complacent.

He added that deterring burglars was fairly simple: “There are certain requirements that a burglar needs in order to commit his crimes.”

So remember:

• When leaving your house unoccupied, leave a light on or music playing.

• Security lighting helps deter thieves

• Use a gate to cut off easy access to the side or rear of the house

• Lock away tools at the premises and shed to prevent their use to affect an entry

• Use good quality locks on doors and windows and always double lock patio doors

• Keep valuable items, such as Ipads, phones and laptops out of sight

Deny him these, and the householder is shifting the risk back onto the criminal and that will probably make him look elsewhere.

Local officers are increasing patrols in the areas where offences are being reported and are working closely with neighbouring police forces as these criminals are not restricted to county borders.

Essex Police are urging all Uttlesford residents to play an active part and to continue to report any incidents of people or vehicles seen acting suspiciously around houses straight to Essex Police.

Residents are also asked to mark property, take photographs of valuable items of jewellery, should items be stolen and subsequently recovered by police, owners can then be traced.

Furthermore if anyone has any information about any of these crimes, or to discuss joining a Neighbourhood Watch Scheme should contact their Local Uttlesford Neighbourhood Policing Team or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

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