Op Hunter – Crime Prevention Event at Melbourn Village Hub
Last night (Tuesday 8th August 2016) we held another ‘Op Hunter’ crime prevention event in Melbourn. We’ve been running these for the last few months and we’ve worked out a successful formula. Following lots of pre-event publicity we saturate the village with as many members of staff as we can muster. We go door to door offering home security surveys in those streets we’ve identified as being at the most risk. At the same time we use a community facility to set up a drop in centre where anyone can come and get expert advice on home security- we also sell some simple security products (at cost- no profit made) that we think are useful and quality products. Finally we hold a crime prevention seminar which covers some of the big topics- how to criminals select their targets? How do you prevent burglary, shed breaks, vehicle crime and cyber crime?
Crime prevention is a big topic, but here are the key facts:
1. It’s not bad luck- criminals select their targets based on risk vs reward, not randomly. This means that it’s important to try to change the calculation they make when looking at your property.
2. The risk goes up if someone is home- if your home is unoccupied, make it look (and sound) like someone is at home- timer switches, dummy TVs, leaving the radio on a talkie channel are all very cheap and effective ways of deterring a burglar.
3. The harder it is to get in- the bigger the risk. Physical security is the foundation for crime prevention- *good* window and door locks that are actually used (without the keys being left in the lock) are an absolute must.
4. Most burglaries take place to the rear of the property- if you have a side gate then this is your first line of defence- lock it and make it harder for the burglar.
5. Lighting- burglars don’t like to be seen: motion activated or timed external security lighting is effective.
6. Burglar alarms. Actually not a clear cut issue- In my personnel opinion you should only consider this *after* you’ve done the other things first. If you are considering an alarm, do your research, get the best one you can afford and if you are going to pay for installation- make sure you get a range of quotes. And NEVER buy from a door-to-door salesman: they might not be competitive rates, could be scam artists and sometimes use pressure tactics.
Finally, take the Bad-Wolf-Test- a 2 minute check of your home security. If your security isn’t up to scratch we’ll point you in the right direction for help or come out to see you.
Here’s a photo from last nights event. I’d like to thank Melbourn village hub for supporting us and letting us use their great facility and for the fantastic support we received from local Cllrs and residents: it was great to see so many of you. My team of PCSOs and staff really care about crime prevention and I’m pretty blooming proud of them at events like this
Chief Inspector James Sutherland
Area Commander- South Cambs http://ow.ly/i/lZ6c6