Spate of burglaries

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POLICE are warning Hartlepool residents to lock their doors after six house burglaries in the past four weeks.

And officers from Cleveland Police are also urging homeowners to properly secure sheds and outhouses following seven reported break-ins to sheds and outhouses.

The bulk of the shed break-ins have happened in the Brierton Lane and West View areas of Hartlepool during which tools and garden equipment were stolen.

A town resident also reported that someone walked into his home through an unlocked door while he was inside, say police. A man aged in his late 30s has since been charged with the burglary in relation to this alleged incident.

Inspector Paul Haytack, of Hartlepool Police, said: “There have been six reports of burglaries in the last month whereby offenders have been able to gain access to properties by insecure means.

“Police would urge residents to be vigilant and report anything suspicious to them and to enhance their crime prevention methods by ensuring all doors and windows are locked even when they are in the property.

“I’d advise them to invest in window locks and security chains for their doors and to remove any small, portable items from being on view through a door or window.

“Lock away all garden tools after use and ensure all sheds and outhouses are fitted with locks and security lighting. It’s also a good idea to plant trees and thorny bushes near to walls or fences to prevent suspects from gaining entry to gardens.”