RESIDENTS of a Southampton ward don’t feel safe in their own homes, one councillor claims, after a series of burglaries by masked gangs.

The Shirley area of the city has been branded as getting like the wild west by resident, Graham Rosamond.

The 74-year-old had his £10,000 moped stolen by a masked gang of around eight people during a recent raid on his home.

During a separate incident in the early hours of Thursday, November 11, thieves stole a Kawasaki motorbike from a property in St James Road.

Councillor for the Shirley ward, Satvir Kaur, has called the burglaries scary, but sadly, not unusual.

She said: “People deserve to feel safe in their homes and our neighbourhood, but currently they don’t. Instead, people tell me they are constantly fearful and tired of spending more in taxes on tackling crime, when it’s only getting worse.”

The Labour politician added: “It is important that we get the police officers we need, not just replacing ones we’ve lost over the years. We also need effective infrastructure, like motorcycle barriers, to prevent specific crimes. Shirley councillors will continue to work closely with the police but remain concerned that until they are properly resourced to do their job, more people will continue to be victims of crime.”

According to Hampshire police, the force is working with partners to identify young people involved in anti-social behaviour and motorcycle theft in the west of Southampton.

Furthermore, they are trying to identify both short and long-term solutions to the issues.

A police spokesperson added: “To tackle this, we need the continued support of the public to provide us with information on who they think is involved. We continue to encourage anyone with any information to come forward and report either online or via Crimestoppers.”

Anyone with information about the theft in St James Road is urged to call 101 and quote 44210452755.