MORE than 80 police officers carried out warrants in 10 homes across Chester this morning (Monday, November 30) as part of a long running operation to tackle burglary in the city.
Officers from Chester Inner and Outer Neighbourhood Policing Teams worked with force specialist team, Vector and officers from other units across the west of Cheshire to simultaneously carry out the warrants.
Items such as laptops, mobile phones and a bike were seized and three people arrested during the early morning operation.
Police also seized items from the houses for forensic examination.
Two men, a 36-year-old and a 17-year-old, were arrested on suspicion of burglary. A 16-year-old was arrested on suspicion of assault and theft.
Two other men were cautioned for possession of cannabis.
A 20-year-old man was arrested earlier in the week in connection with this operation on suspicion of burglary.
Operation Strikeout has been running since August to tackle burglary in Chester through increased patrols and security checks on homes.
Today, officers acting on information from the local community carried out the warrants as one part of the operation. The majority of the warrants were in Blacon with one in Ellesmere Port and One in the Newtown area of the city.
Insp Steve Beddows of the Chester Outer Neighbourhood Policing Team said: “We have seen an increase in burglary in Chester, particularly around Blacon, Upton and Hoole. These warrants are just a small part of a wider operation to tackle these crimes.
“The majority of the burglaries we have seen have been sneak –ins, where doors or windows have been left unlocked. Thieves can then sneak into the home and take small valuable items such as laptops, handbags or wallets. The occupant often doesn’t know they have been a victim until they notice things are missing.”
Insp Mel Williams of the Chester Inner Neighbourhood Policing Team said: “Crimes like this affect victims in so many ways. The worst part for many victims isn’t missing the stolen property, it is the feeling that someone has been into your home and violated your privacy.
“We will continue to target those people who cause such upset to people in their own homes.”
As part of the operation, PCSOs have been visiting homes in the area to check security and advise residents about improvements they could make.
Insp Beddows said: “In one night, our PCSOs found 20 insecure homes. On each occasion, they spoke to the residents and advised them about keeping their doors locked, even if they are in the house at the time. It only takes a few minutes for someone to sneak in while you are in another room.”
To contact your Neighbourhood Policing Team call 0845 458 6375 or email firstname.lastname@example.org