Number plates thefts probe

POLICE have been left “bemused” after a spate of thefts of vehicle registration plates.

In the past two weeks, 11 number plates have been stolen from cars in the west of the Peterlee area.

Five were taken from cars and vans in Tees Close, Southway, Tamar Close, Hulme Court and Holden Place overnight between Wednesday, August 24 and Thursday, August 25.

A further six were taken from vehicles in Oakerside Park, Oakerside Drive, Lancaster Hill, Westmoreland Rise and Moray Close overnight between Tuesday and Wednesday this week.

Police have been left puzzled as to why the plastic number plates have been stolen, especially as they are thought to have been of no real value.

They have also looked into whether the plates may have been used in other vehicle crimes, but so far nothing has been reported.

All of the plates are from the front of the vehicle, and none have been taken from the back.

Police are now stepping up patrols in the affected areas.

Sergeant Steve Hawkes, of Peterlee Neighbourhood Policing Team, said: “We are a little bit bemused at the moment as to why these crimes have been committed. The vehicles are varied and the thefts have been committed very sporadically. The sheer volume is a concern.”

Police are appealing for people to keep an eye out for any suspicious activity and to report any cause for concern to Peterlee Police on 0345 6060365 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.