‘COFFEE with a copper’ is a new initiative planned for Saddleworth as part of an on-going crime prevention campaign.
Fuller details will be released later in the year but various locations will host drop-in sessions where officers will dispense advice and guidance in informal surroundings.
“We want to engage with as many people as possible,” explained PC Lee Cullen.
“This Spring, we are going to have a push on managing risk, harm, threat and vulnerability,” he added.
“We want our local community to manage their risk.
“We are talking about home security, car security, personal security and community vigilance.
“We are still getting vans being broken into. If you have £500 worth of tools don’t leave them in your vehicle.
“Even though it will be frustrating lumping three or four boxes into the house, don’t leave them in a vehicle which can be easily entered.
“There was an incident in Diggle where a van had a two-inch diameter hole drilled in the metal next to the, lock. And they got the vehicle away.
“Our criminals are always trying to get on step in front of us,” added PC Cullen, revealing how thieves now use a piece of kit to scan codes off a set of keys in the house.
“They then walk up to the car, press a button and the doors come open.
“However, there are now lead lined boxes you can put keys in where you can’t get a signal to it.
“One of the big things for me are wheelie bins. Are they kept inside your property?
Or are they outside, up against a fence where Billy Burglar can come in, get on the wheelie bin, and have a quick step over?
“The tools in your garden do you put them away and lock them up?.
“Burglars will turn up look for a tool to shove under the patio door, lever it off the rail and then they are in.
“On car security, people leave high value items in the car like laptops, phones and handbags.
“Make a last check at night to make sure everything is actually locked.
“We have strong evidence to suggest criminals will walk round for eight hours of the night, trying car doors, trying house doors.
“If they get in two or three vehicles it is worth their while to walk up to the extra 300 cars they don’t get in.”
PC Cullen also warned about a frightening new method used by burglars to break into properties.
A house in Mossley was the target for intruders armed with a blow torch, police have revealed.
PC Cullen told members of Greenfield and Grasscroft Residents’ Association: “The criminals have taken a blow torch to a UPVC door and melted it off the hinges.
“Luckily, they were scared off and left the scene,” he confirmed.
“But the house had two Audis sat on the driveway and they were probably looking for keys.
“But god forbid the doors had set alight and caused more issues over safety”.
Inspector Stewart Wilson has joined the Neighbourhood Policing Team with responsibility for Saddleworth and Lees, as well as Shaw and Royton and Crompton.
His role officially started on March 1, 2018 and he will work with the local policing team in the areas.