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Thieves target Harefield neighbourhood in Southampton
BURGLARS are targeting a Southampton community getting away with thousands of pounds in cash and electrical goods in a series of night-time raids.
Police have issued warning to residents in the Harefield area after the spate of break-ins were reported during the past fortnight.
The September crime spree has seen thieves make off with a huge haul of goods, including a laptop, three iPhones, an iPod, a satellite navigation system and a handbag.
The Daily Echo can reveal that 11 properties have been targeted in the area in the past two weeks, including four homes in Bitterne Road East and two in neighbouring Milbury Crescent.
Further properties in St Elizabeth Avenue, Sunningdale Gardens, Cheriton Avenue, Selborne Walk and Shales Road have also been raided by the opportunist burglars.
Detectives said that all of the burglaries have seen thieves strike between the hours of 7pm and 7am, using open windows and unlocked doors to gain access to properties.
Officers investigating the break-ins have refused to rule out the possibility that the same person or gang could be responsible for the crimewave.
The spree comes just months after Hampshire police reported a four per cent drop in the number of burglaries being carried out across the county.
Inspector Patrick Holdaway, from Bitterne police station, said: “We are currently experiencing an increase in burglaries in the Harefield area of Southampton.
“These are taking place in the late evening and into the early hours of the morning, with the offenders gaining access through open windows and unlocked doors.
“It also appears that the offender is garden hopping, using rear gardens to gain access to properties.
“We would therefore remind residents to keep windows shut and doors locked and call the police if they witness anyone acting in suspicious circumstances.
“We have increased police patrols in the area and would welcome public support in helping us identify the persons responsible.”
Anyone with information should contact Bitterne police station, on 101, or call Crimestoppers anonymously, on 0800 555 111.