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Hamilton residents combine with Police to prevent burglary a

Hamilton residents combine with Police to prevent burglary and catch offenders

Hamilton Police are the commending the actions of Nawton resident who used camera equipment set up to capture yesterday's eclipse to catch a trio of burglars in the act of breaking into a home.

City Tactical Coordinator, Senior Sergeant Freda Grace, said a woman was at home preparing for a spot of amateur astronomy when she saw something far darker threatening her neighbour's home.

"She noticed three juvenile males acting suspiciously down the street so kept an eye on them. Then when she saw one knock on a neighbour's door and saw another jump the fence, she dialled 111.

"While providing a commentary on the boys' activities to the Police operator the woman used her camera to photograph the offenders and these images, coupled with the description she gave them, meant a patrol in the area was able to apprehend the trio within minutes."

Ms Grace the woman's actions were exactly what Police meant when they speak about Police and the community working together to prevent crime.

"This is a perfect example; the woman saw something and then did something without placing herself at risk. That doing something was phoning 111 in a timely manner enabling us to respond and then going the extra mile by capturing images of the offenders.

"As a result the three boys, aged 14, 14 and 16-years-old were arrested for burglary and Police were able to advise the home owners of what had occurred and that arrests had been made before they even knew they had been burgled."

Ms Grace said yesterday's success wasn't the only example of local residents stepping up to protect their own or neighbours' homes over recent days.

"Four days ago a Fairfield resident, who had already been the victim of burglars and received crime prevention advice during a community constable's visit, put that advice to good use when he saw three teenage boys acting suspiciously and phoned 111.

"Officers arrived to find the trio breaking in through a neighbour's ranch slider and arrested them."

Ms Grace said an Enderley resident also made good use of security advice given to him after his home was broken into and installed a state of the art security system.

"Unfortunately his home was burgled last week but this time, due to high resolution images captured by the security cameras and an 18-year-old male is now in prison.

"Then two days ago a Rotokauri couple's home was broken into but the offenders fled after a burglar alarm was activated. The alarm had been installed after Police had visited their home following a burglary earlier in the year."

Ms Grace said the value of crime prevention advice was high provided victims adhered to it but Police would prefer to prevent crimes from happening in the first place and encouraged people to contact them before they became victims for information on how to target harden their homes.

"There are a range of cost effective measures available, some just involve getting to know your neighbours or setting up a Neighbourhood Support group.

"You can also log on to the Operation SNAP website, www.snap.org.nz . This FREE website is used to record serial numbers and images of valuables such as electronics, firearms, passports and jewellery and can greatly assist Police in tracing your property if it is stolen."

Ms Grace said other options include investing in security systems, alarms or synthetic DNA marking.

"But one of the simplest things you can do is like these community heroes- if you see something, do something and that is ring 111."


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