Grand Canyon car theft purge for gorge

AN OPERATION to crack down on car break-ins has been launched in Cheddar. Operation Grand Canyon will target cars parked in the gorge which may have valuables left on show. Sergeant Peter Yensen, of Cheddar police, said: Every spare moment will be spent

AN OPERATION to crack down on car break-ins has been launched in Cheddar.Operation Grand Canyon will target cars parked in the gorge which may have valuables left on show. Sergeant Peter Yensen, of Cheddar police, said: "Every spare moment will be spent patrolling the gorge. Officers will be checking vehicles and chatting to individuals in cars who may be acting suspiciously. "The operation has been brought in over the tourism season to crack down on crime. Crime statistics always go up in summer because criminals tend to target tourists, although obviously this relates to residents as well. Anyone who leaves valuables in their car is a target. "Tourists visiting the area feel more relaxed on holiday and don't think to lock their valuables up and residents tend to leave windows and doors open in the warmer weather, which is an open invite for an opportunist thief. "The most popular item on the thieves shopping list is satellite navigation systems. Even if people take them out of the car, if the holder is left on display, someone may be tempted to break in to see if it is in the glove box. Even the suction mark on the window is enough of a clue for a keen thief." In a bid to tackle car crime, a police covert capture car was parked somewhere in the Axbridge and Cheddar area in early May and will remain there until someone is caught. The car, which is packed with high-tech recording equipment, is parked in an area where car thieves have been operating in the hope it will catch them red-handed. Anyone who breaks into the car will be recorded on cameras so police can use it as evidence and to make arrests.

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