POLICE are stepping up their patrols in crime hotspots in Warwick following a rise in thefts from vehicles.
Thirty nine incidents of such thefts were reported between June 1 and July 28 with items stolen including catalytic converters, number plates and tools.
As a result, Warwickshire Police is stepping up its patrols in “hotspot” areas including Leam Terrace, West Street, Emscote Drive and Gunnery Terrace – as well as action being taken at Warwick Hospital.
Safer Neighbourhoods Chief Insp Karen Jones said: “We have already identified the problem areas and we’ve stepped up patrols – with our officers providing a visible presence and engaging with the public.”
Chief Insp Jones continued these thefts were also happening in public car parks.
She explained: “Residents are often good at making sure they do what they can to minimise the chance of these thefts happening at home.
“But they may let their guard down when it comes to parking outside a pub, hotel or shop – making it easier for would-be thieves to target their vehicles.
“We’re also speaking with the businesses affected to offer advice how they can help us to protect your vehicles.”
Warwick Hospital also featured on the list, with three incidents reported in two months.
A spokesperson for the hospital said their security team has been working closely with Warwickshire Police to ensure all incidents are reported and investigated.
The hospital has also stepped-up security in its car parks by installing better CCTV, more lighting and Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) technology.
They added: “In addition, our security team carries out regular patrols, to ensure visitors and staff feel safe and secure while parking in our Warwick Hospital car parks.”
A spokesperson for Warwickshire Police said: “Officers are working hard to deter these crimes, and to catch those responsible.
“There are also some tips you can follow that can make it more difficult for would-be thieves.
“For catalytic converter theft – try to park your car with its exhaust backing onto either a wall, fence, kerb or another vehicle.
“For number plates, buying and fitting tamper-resistant screws can make life far more difficult for thieves and thus make it far less likely your plates will be used on cars which commit crimes.
“Those who have no choice but to store tools in a van overnight should consider using a lockable cabinet within the vehicle.
“Please remember to report any suspicious behaviour to us by calling 101 or visiting www.warwickshire.police.uk/ro/report – online reports are assessed in exactly the same way as telephone reports.
“Always call 999 if there is a crime in progress.”