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Homeowners are being urged to prevent burglaries by keeping property secure and valuable out of view over the festive season.
People leaving presents on view under Christmas trees, buying lots of new items and leaving homes unoccupied as they go out shopping or visiting friends and family can prove a tempting combination for criminals.
In order to tackle the issues Humberside Police will be targeting known offenders and carrying out both high visibility and undercover patrols of burglary hotspots.
“Burglary at any time is awful but at Christmas the distress caused can be even worse with homes feeling violated and plans for festive period being thrown into disarray.
"For this reason we are committed to the public in supporting you with policing activity to prevent and deter burglaries across the force, with proactive targeted patrolling, offering guidance to residents around improving the security of their homes and targeting offenders to ensure they are quickly brought to justice.
“But the key is preventing as many offences as possible by encouraging members of the public to keep their homes secure, avoiding placing presents or valuables in view to would be burglars and by reporting crime in progress to us on 999.”
In December 2014*, 313 homes were targeted by burglars across the Humberside police force area. Some victims had their gifts stolen and festive plans ruined by opportunist offenders.
On Gifford Close, Hull last December an insecure home was targets by a opportunist thief. The unknown burglar spotted the slightly ajar rear ground floor window before entering the property and stealing a number of presents that were wrapped under the tree.
In another incident on Kettlewell Road, Grimsby last year offenders entered a unlocked flat and took 20 presents that had been left wrapped in the property.
“I don’t want to see similar incidents to these again this year and therefore I would urge everyone to do their bit by keeping their homes secure to keep thieves out and not leaving items that may tempt thieves on display.
"Together we can make it a Christmas to remember for all the right reasons.”
Here are our top five tips for keeping you and your home safe over Christmas:
Keep your home secure. A third of burglaries see thieves getting in through unlocked or open doors and windows.
Store gifts out of sight until Christmas day.
Be a good neighbour, report anything suspicious in your area to the police on 101.
Make your home look occupied even when you’re out. Use timer-switches on your lights, ask a trusted friend or neighbour to close/open your curtains for you and use a plug-in timer for the radio to make it look and sound as if someone is at home.
Remember to also keep your outbuildings as secure as possible. Use a decent lock and consider fitting an alarm.
For further advice on keeping yourself and property safe over the Christmas period visit Humberside Police's virtual on-line Yuletide Christmas Calendar.
Behind each window of the calendar you will find a Yuletide related Christmas video aimed at highlighting the work of the force, helping to keep you safe or simply bringing a smile to your face.
If you see people acting suspiciously in your community, if there is a burglary in progress or if you have details about those involved in criminality get in touch. This can be done using 999 in an emergency, 101 in a non-emergency or via Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.
Households across Lincoln are being encouraged to go green this Christmas and help to support their local hospice with their tree-cycle campaign.
On Saturday 7th January, St Barnabas Hospice will collect and recycle unwanted trees in return for a donation.
The hospice will be collecting trees in parts of LN1, LN2, LN3, LN4, LN5 and LN6.
“This is the simplest, greenest and most charitable way to get rid of your Christmas tree after the festivities.
"Let the hospice take away the stress and mess of disposing of your tree and help us to raise vital funds for hospice care.
“Donations are crucial to the success of this event and to ensuring that we can continue to provide dedicated, compassionate hospice care every day of the year.”
To arrange a collection and donate to the hospice book in at www.charityxmastreecollection.com
Patients and visitors will be able to park for free today at Scunthorpe, Grimsby and Goole hospitals during visiting hours.
The car park barriers at the three hospitals, which are run by Northern Lincolnshire and Goole NHS Foundation Trust, will be raised between 11am and 8pm.
“It would be fantastic if no one had to be in hospital over Christmas but unfortunately we do have patients who have to stay in over the festive period.
“This Christmas Day, patients and visitors will be able to park for free.
"We understand people would rather be at home with their loved ones so we welcome visitors as usual to come in but without a cost to park during our extended visiting hours from 11am to 8pm.”
Visitors are reminded that the hospital Park and Ride from The Parishes in Scunthorpe town centre will not be running on Christmas Day.
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A fresh warning has been issued after a bogus police officer conned an 86-year-old Beverley man into handing over £9,300.
The incident happened on Tuesday, September 6, when the victim received a call from a man claiming to be working for the fraud squad.
The caller told the victim there had been suspicious activity on his account and advised him to withdraw his money immediately and provided details of a ‘safe’ account to pay it into.
The matter has been reported to the bank and Action Fraud and an investigation has been launched.
Officers from the Humberside Economic Crime unit have today reiterated advice on how to avoid falling foul of similar conmen.
The basics include:
• Never give out bank or personal details to strangers
• Don’t had over money or transfer funds to unknown accounts
• If you believe you have been called, hang up and use another phone to call police. Don’t use the same phone immediately as the offender may be maintaining the connection.
If you are called as part of this scam, make a note of the details – including the number the bogus caller has rung from – and call 101 or Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040.