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Crime spree in Eketahuna

Police say a crime spree in Eketahuna is the worst in at least 18 months. PHOTO/GETTY IMAGES

Police are reminding Eketahuna residents to pay attention to their home security after thieves targeted vehicles and outhouses in the town last weekend.

The thieves stole petrol, food, money, and shoes from at least four different properties last Friday night.

Eketahuna resident Dani [whose last name the Times-Age agreed not to print] said thieves had broken into a shed and rummaged through a car on her property.

The shed contained a sleepout and a storeroom protected by a padlock.

“They were pretty brave to come into our place because while we don’t have a dog, we’ve got a very long driveway,” Dani said. “You can’t see the sheds from the front, so that means that they either know the place, or they’re very gutsy.”

The thieves had entered Dani’s property through a closed gate and broke off a lock to enter the shed.

Because the storeroom contained many small items, Dani had not yet determined exactly what the thieves had stolen.

She only realised that someone had been on to her property the following day when she saw a soundbar speaker sitting outside the shed.

“That was strange because they had obviously picked it up but left it there.”

She said the thieves had not taken bicycles from the shed.

“There were so many things that they could have taken, but it seemed to be cash and petrol that they were looking for.”

Several of Dani’s neighbours had reported missing cans of petrol and cash stolen from cars.

“They targeted a lot of houses on the block, which is quite brazen … It’s pretty scary when you see the number of posts about people’s houses that they’ve been into.”

Dani said the thieves must have been on foot because she would have heard a car coming down the driveway or seen tyre tracks in the wet ground.

Police station in Eketahuna. PHOTO/FILE

Eketahuna police officer Jymahl Glassey said it appeared that the thieves did not enter any main dwellings but had looked around the properties for opportunities to steal items.

“It is unsettling that the thieves think that they can enter other people’s addresses and help themselves to things they find that are not theirs,” Glassey said.

“Despite the rightful thought that our homes and property are ours and should be safe from intrusion, this offending just demonstrates the extent thieves will go to.”

Glassey said he had not experienced any similar sprees in the 18 months that he had been based in Eketahuna.

He said people could discourage thieves by taking simple measures to protect their property.

“Costless practices like locking homes, sheds, and cars can deter an opportunistic crook. For a small but well-spent cost, things like sensor lights and alarms positioned in strategic places can bring your attention to someone on your property.”

Glassey also advised people to consider installing CCTV.

“Ideally, thieves would learn to leave other people’s property alone, but the reality is we need to look at these types of security measures to enhance our property’s safety.”

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