Sheffield’s burglary hotspots revealed – is your area being targeted?

Sheffield’s burglary hotspots can be revealed by The Star today.

Thursday, 28th February 2019, 8:14 am
Updated Thursday, 28th February 2019, 8:17 am

Figures showed the top five most targeted districts last year were the city centre, Broomhill and Sharrow Vale, Dore and Totley, Darnall and Firth Park.

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House cordoned off and under police guard in Sheffield

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Data also highlighted how there has been a fall in the overall number of break-ins across the city.

There were 5711 reported burglaries last year – the equivalent of about 15 a day – which was eight per cent less than in 2017.

In recent months police have vowed to make tackling burglary a top priority and have introduced a number of new initiatives. 

This includes Operation Furnace, in which a crack team of officers are now tasked with bringing to justice known burglars targeting communities and making lives a misery.

Green Party councillor Douglas Johnson.

But Sheffield Heeley MP Louise Haigh, shadow policing minister, believes Government enforced cuts to police forces mean many criminals end up getting away unpunished.

She said: “The truth is reckless cuts to the police mean that criminals increasingly think they can get away with it.

“The Tories have to take responsibility; you simply cannot protect the public on the cheap.

Louise Haigh MP.

“The erosion of neighbourhood policing has had devastating consequences for crime prevention and public safety.”

The figures, obtained using the Freedom of Information Act, puts the city centre top of the pile with 429 incidents.

Then came Broomhill and Sharrow Vale (341), Dore and Totley (283), Darnall (276) and Firth Park (271).

The figures show reported crimes categorised as burglary, attempted burglary, distraction burglary and attempted distraction burglaries on residential homes and businesses.   

Sheffield skyline.

Douglas Johnson, a councillor for the city ward, said: “When I’ve spoken to local businesses – for some reason, hairdressers are often targeted – the worst impact of a burglary is the fear of a repeat attack. 

“The cuts to back-room staff most affect the police’s ability to get offenders to court. 

“In my ward, the local police have developed a much more intelligent approach to policing, which means gathering intelligence on patterns of activity by the small number of people who engage in criminal behaviour.

“We want to see how a bit of cross-organisational working can help them be more effective, such as by using council premises so they don’t have to trail all the way back to the police station at break times.”

Detective Inspector Jamie Henderson said: “Broomhill and Sharrow is one of the council wards that feature a lot of student accommodation and multi-occupancy residences.

DI Jamie Henderson.

“Without being patronising, sometimes students have never lived on their own before and have not had to be concerned with home security. My advice to students is to be more conscious of house security.

“If you share a house it's likely that you and your housemates will each have a computer, a mobile phone and other valuables and burglars target shared houses because they know there will be more to steal.

“Make sure all your housemates follow the basic rules for home security and that everyone gets into the habit of locking up when they go out as burglars will go for properties that look insecure.”

He added: “Dore and Totley is considered to one of Sheffield’s more affluent areas and therefore burglars may target these areas because they may have high performance motor cars and good transport links to quickly leave the area.

“Having your vehicle stolen can be extremely upsetting and have a major impact on your daily routine – getting to work, dropping the kids off at school or running a business.

“If you have to park your vehicle on your driveway or on the street, consider using additional security devices and ensure the vehicle is secure and that nothing of value is left in it.”

Insp Henderson said officers check forensics at the scene of a crime, along with reviewing any CCTV, and also offer crime prevention advice to the victim and people in neighbouring properties. 

Business owners are advised to:- 

*Install CCTV

*Fit anti ram-raid bollards

*Try not to keep cash on the premises and use a bolted down safe.

And to residents:-

*Do not leave valuables such as car keys on display in a window

*If you have a garage, park your vehicle in it 

*Ensure your doors and windows are shut and locked when not in use. 

Report crime to police on 101 or 999 if it is an emergency.