Steps to success in war on burglaries

Wybourn Inspector Paul Ferguson
Wybourn Inspector Paul Ferguson
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Police work to drive down the number of burglaries in Manor and Wybourn is paying off - but there is no danger of officers resting on their laurels.

When the festive season of 2012 saw a huge spike in the number of burglaries in the area, officers from the local Safer Neighbourhood Team knew they needed to act.

A number of factors - including the release from prison of several known offenders at the same time - were blamed for the spate, which at its peak included 18 break-ins in one 24-hour period.

But the picture this year is much different, officers say. While there were burglaries in Prince of Wales Road and Wybourn last weekend, reports of incidents are down around 50 per cent on this time last year.

And that is down to hard work, police intelligence and around 20,000 home visits designed to teach people how to prevent themselves from being a burglary victim, said South Yorkshire Police Inspector Paul Ferguson.

“During that Christmas period burglaries went through the roof,” he said. “There were a lot of offenders coming out of jail at the same time.

“One thing policing teams have focused on now is ensuring they are in the right place at the right time. This means using crime data to predict where a burglar might strike next.

“Joe Bloggs on the street might fall on hard times and shoplift in Asda, but burglars and robbers are very different. They are career criminals.

“Since then we’ve worked with the probation service to make sure we are all over them like a rash. We want to support their release and rehabilitation but also be there if they strike again.”

The police are keen to drill home the message that the new measures are not part of a temporary crackdown, but have been ingrained into the way officers deal with burglaries.

Insp Ferguson added: “It is hard sometimes for the public to see success, but this work has become the norm.”