Campaign targets distraction burglars in Lichfield and Burntwood

boguscallerA new police campaign is aiming to protect people in Lichfield and Burntwood from distraction burglars.

The Not Sure? Don’t Open The Door! message is being given out to elderly and vulnerable residents across Staffordshire as part of a national campaign.

The campaign aims to make people aware of the tactics used by distraction burglars and how they can prevent themselves from becoming potential victims. Posters and crime reduction leaflets will be distributed to places such as doctors’ surgeries, bingo halls and community centres.

Assistant Chief Constable Mick Harrison, who has responsibility for Neighbourhood Policing, said:

“This type of crime is despicable. Victims of distraction burglary can suffer terribly both emotionally and physically. The average age of a victim nationally is 81, so it’s understandable that many suffer a decline in health afterwards and the experience can seriously affect their trust and faith in people.

“Between April 2009 and February 2010 there were 144 distraction burglary offences reported to police in Staffordshire, which is a reduction of over 20 per cent compared to the same period a year earlier, when there were 181. This campaign aims to reduce the number of potential victims still further, ensuring the public are equipped with crime prevention advice.”

A new national unit has been set up as part of Operation Liberal which will oversee a database of crimes, offenders, vehicles, forensic information and images.

For more information about Operation Liberal’s Not Sure? Don’t Open the Door! campaign visit www.staffordshire.police.uk or call 0300 123 4455.

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