Six-week spate of break-ins in Weston sees nearly one van targeted by thieves each day
PUBLISHED: 12:00 28 September 2017
Avon and Somerset Constabulary
Weston has seen a spate of vans and cars being broken into in the past six weeks, with thieves 'stealing livings' by targeting vehicles containing power tools.
Almost one vehicle a day has been broken into in Weston Hillside and Banwell in the past six weeks, leading Avon and Somerset Constabulary to step up its efforts to deter and catch thieves.
The force reports ‘around 30 vans and at least seven cars’ have been broken into over the six-week period.
PCSO Dan Moulden, of the neighbourhood police team, said: “Vans are being broken into primarily for power tools stored inside while the cars have been targeted for any loose change or belongings left on view.
“Most of the cars were left insecure.
“The neighbourhood team have been carrying out extra high-visibility patrols and recently left letters containing crime prevention advice on around 114 vans parked in the area.
“We’re working with Neighbourhood Watch and would remind people to follow our crime prevention advice.”
But it is not just residents of Hillside and Banwell which have been stung by thieves.
Hutton builder Ian Nicholds has had his van broken into several times in recent months – most recently on September 13 – costing him ‘well over £3,000’.
He said: “Three times I’ve had my van done, and my mate has been done twice in the past four months.
“They cleared out my van, taking a couple of drill sets, a grinder and all my hand tools which are worth more than £1,000.
“I’ve had to order new tools and I spent £600 just to get back to work. I still haven’t replaced all my hand tools because you don’t realise what’s missing until you need it.
“These people steal your living, but they don’t see that, they just see a few quid. It’s crazy.”
Rob Naylor said he had his car broken into by thieves for loose change worth just £3 two weeks ago.
He said: “It cost me £100 in excess – thank goodness I had vandalism insurance.
“I’m now worried every time I leave my car outside my house, though there’s no longer anything in it.
“This is stupid. You shouldn’t have to worry about this kind of thing.”