Police in Causeway Coast and Glens are stepping up patrols in the Limavady and Garvagh areas following a recent spate of burglaries.
In the most recent incident on Wednesday, April 26, a house in the Lyttlesdale area of Garvagh was targeted while the owner was out.
Commenting on the anti-crime initiative, Chief Inspector Mark McClarence said: “The patrols will be there primarily to prevent further burglaries and provide reassurance to local residents. Alongside this focused operational activity we are also asking residents to take the appropriate steps to deter criminal elements.
“Burglars can strike at any time of the day or night so it makes sense to always have your doors and windows locked. If you are spending time in the garden them make sure no one can enter your home unnoticed. If there is a spell of warm weather it can be tempting to leave the windows open but this can make it all too easy for someone to slip through and make off with your handbag or tablet or cash.
“Don’t answer your door to strangers. Ask them to provide identification or to come back at another time. If you live alone or are elderly then call on a neighbour for assistance if you are worried about a cold caller. A cold caller is someone who drops by to offer gardening or general maintenance services; it can be someone selling carpets or cleaning materials; or it can be someone collecting for charity. Anyone with genuine intentions will always carry identification and will leave if asked.
“At night time make sure that shed and garages are locked and that gardening equipment, bikes and toys are put away. Anything left lying out is only an open invitation to a passing thief. Again, make sure doors and windows are locked and set your alarm before going to bed. Make this a routine instead of something you only remember from time to time.
“If you want further advice on how to protect your home and property please visit our website www.psni.police.uk or call 101 and ask to speak to our Crime Prevention Officer.”
Police went on to appeal to Anyone who saw suspicious activity in the Garvagh area between 9am and 9.30am on Wednesday, April 26 to contact detectives at Coleraine on the 101 number quoting reference 728.
“Any small piece of information could help us find those responsible and prevent further burglaries in our community.”