Police warning to residents in Milton Keynes - ‘Don’t be one of them’

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Thames Valley Police is urging residents in Milton Keynes to make sure their homes are secure from burglary this summer.

Figures show that one in three recent burglaries were through an unlocked door or window. Thames Valley Police and Safer MK have teamed up to launch a campaign, ‘Don’t be one of them’, that reminds residents to keep their properties safe.

One of the most effective ways to deter burglars is for residents to ensure their UPVC doors are fully locked using the key, not just pulled closed with the handle pushed up.

DC Christopher Bigg, based in the investigation Team at Milton Keynes police station, said: “Some residents do not realise that, if they close the door and lift the handle up from the inside, the door is in fact not securely locked.

“It is important to stress that the key must be used to turn the lock to make the door secure. If the key is not used, then in most cases the exterior handle can deactivate all of the multi-locks, resulting in just one catch holding the door in place.

“Making sure your doors are strong and secure, and that all windows are fitted with a lock, is a simple way to prevent thieves gaining easy access to your home. You should ensure any lock fitted is certified by the British Standard Institute.

“We have worked with Milton Keynes Council to produce burglary prevention leaflets, which will be distributed to households.”

Cllr Hannah O’Neil, cabinet member for community safety, said: “It is startling to hear that one in three burglaries occur because offenders have gained entry through an unlocked door or window, basically helping themselves to the contents of homes.

“With the warmer weather now upon us, it is hard to keep cool at night. However, I urge you to think about the windows you choose to open during the day and night, and make sure you lock them when you go out. Burglary is the ultimate intrusion and it can be easily be avoided by taking a few simple steps to keep your home safe.”

The campaign highlights a few simple steps that residents can take to stay safe, such as checking all doors and windows are closed and locked when you leave the house and before going to bed; securing your rear garden, padlocking gates, and checking fences and hedges; and leaving any keys out of sight or reach of windows, the letterbox or cat flap where a burglar could hook them out.