Bedfordshire Police asks for the public’s help in protecting the elderly against burglary Image:Adobe Stock

Check on neighbours and relatives to help protect them against crime

The coronavirus pandemic has left lots of people isolated from friends and family. Some criminals have taken this as an opportunity to target the most vulnerable in society.

Bedfordshire Police has recently seen a number of burglars target elderly people and it is asking the public to check in on their neighbours and relatives to help protect them against the crime.

Detective Inspector Lee Martin, from the force’s dedicated burglary team, said:

“As we continue to follow government guidance, some people have become secluded with little contact from their family and friends.

“For some, this means they don’t have a wider family presence around them, along with access to pieces of advice and guidance that would usually be shared in order to keep them safe.

“We know that many older people find it harder to access advice about crime prevention online or struggle to find help and support about things they may be worried about. That is why we are asking for your help to check in on your elderly neighbours and family and share our advice with them.”

In these recent incidents, offenders have been looking for cash, jewellery and watches and officers would like your help in sharing this burglary prevention advice:

  • Please make sure you keep any valuable items safe and out of sight. In the run up to the Christmas period, please avoid leaving presents under the tree
  • If you can, please deposit any cash into your bank, try not to store large sums at home
  • Double lock your doors and if you have a PVC-U and multipoint locking door, ensure you lift the handle and turn and remove the key, as this will ensure the door is locked at multiple points, making it more secure
  • If you are going out, then leave a light or radio on and make your house look lived in where possible

Last week, officers put a prolific burglar from Bedford in jail for four and a half years as they continue to tackle burglary across the county.

If you have any concerns about burglary in your area, please call 101 to report this.

If you, or anyone you know, have been affected by crime, the Signpost Hub offers free and confidential support to victims in Bedfordshire, whether it has been reported to police or not, irrespective of where and when the crime occurred. Contact 0800 0282887 or visit Signpost for Bedfordshire for further information.