Family gutted after break-ins

By Mike Barrington

Thieves return on Boxing Day after stealing items on Christmas Day

DAMAGE: Glazier Chris Kingan repairs a door broken by thieves who burgled a Whangarei home on Christmas Day then returned to kick their way through another door on Boxing Day. PHOTO/JOHN STONE
DAMAGE: Glazier Chris Kingan repairs a door broken by thieves who burgled a Whangarei home on Christmas Day then returned to kick their way through another door on Boxing Day. PHOTO/JOHN STONE

Thieves who raided a Whangarei house on Christmas Day were not content with the big bags of electrical loot they hauled away.

They returned on Boxing Day, possibly to take a large flat-screen television set they had left behind the previous day because it was too big for them to carry.

The woman who lives at the house on Western Hills Drive with her husband and their two children aged under two said they had been robbed twice about three or four years ago and had since installed deadbolts on doors and windows and an external siren burglar alarm.

But on Christmas Day, they returned from a family lunch at Kerikeri to find a window on their home's rear door had been broken to gain entry, the burglar alarm had gone off, and thieves had made off with electrical goods and clothes.

The break-in occurred between 11am and 9pm on Christmas Day.

"They took my laptop computer, the hard drive with all our babies' and family photographs on it, the iPhone, the iPad, some of my husband's clothes - a whole lot of stuff easy for them to sell," the woman said.

The television power cords and remote control were among the gear removed, but the television set itself had been left behind.

She and her husband had found a rubbish bag in their driveway and a pram set up in their basement as though the thieves had intended using it to carry away their loot.

Instead the stolen goods had been carried away in two of the couple's travel bags.

The woman said that on Boxing Day the family went out for lunch then "shot home to check" and found a side door panel on their house had been kicked in, leaving its deadbolt intact.

"Neighbours said a car with three men came up the drive," she said.

The couple were "pretty gutted" over the double raid, considering the thieves were "stupid or desperate" to return to the crime scene, possibly to grab the television set which was also left behind after the second break-in.

The family's burglary was the second one carried out in Whangarei - and one of four Northland-wide - on December 25 as thieves decided to ruin the big day for others. Whangarei police said a near-new Honda 400 quad bike which the owners valued at $9000 was taken from a rural property in Oakleigh Rd between 2-6pm on Christmas Day.

- NORTHERN ADVOCATE

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