Police issue warning after spate of vehicle break-ins in Great Dunmow and Saffron Walden


- Credit: Archant

Tips on how to stop thieves breaking into your car have been issued by Essex Police after a spate of vehicle thefts in the district in the past two weeks.

Two power units for Stihl tools, valued at £1,200 were stolen from a Ford Transit van in Gaces Acre, Newport, on June 30 after the sliding door was forced.

A few days earlier on June 26, testing equipment worth £1,200 was stolen from another, grey transit van parked overnight in Ross Close, Saffron Walden.

On June 29, three cars were broken into just before 3am in Great Dunmow and a member of the public reported three men acting suspiciously around the Conifer Way/Walnut Walk and Woodlands Park Drive areas of Great Dunmow. Police found several vehicles open with the the glove boxes raided.

Among the things stolen were sunglasses, a sat nav, a blue tooth speaker, a cable for an MP3 player and an electric key fob.

Three more cares were broken into in Dunmow from July 1-2.

Crime prevention advice includes looking at the car to make sure it is locked. Acting Sergeant James Ireland said: “We all do it, we walk away from the car and with our back turned we press the button on the key to lock it, never thinking that it may not lock.

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“Yet, just looking at the car to see the lights flashing, or pulling the handle to make sure it is locked can prevent a theft.

“If the car doesn’t lock, the battery could be faulty, or the signal could be being blocked by a nearby device. The advice is lock it and check it to prevent crimes.”

Other tips are to park the higher value car in the garage or park the most expensive car behind the cheaper one on the drive, so it can’t be driven away.

With higher value cars, it could be worth fitting a tracking system.

The police say as cars become more advanced, thieves become more technical too.

They recommend the “good old fashioned” lock as a good visual deterrent.

And at home, particularly now it is summer, a peak time for thieves, before you go to bed, check that all doors, ground floor windows and easily accessible windows are closed and locked.

Activate the downstairs zone for the intruder alarm. Make sure back doors and side gates are locked.

They say put the car keys out of sight, preferably in a drawer that is noisy to open – but don’t take them to bed with you.

Anyone with information on any of these crimes can contact Braintree CID at Braintree Police Station on 101 or call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.