Warning a sign of the crimes

By David Eames

Mike Sienkiewicz would like to see burglars locked up for a decade, then on their release forced to wear global positioning bracelets for 10 years.

But until that happens, the Mt Roskill man will have to make do with his own tree-mounted, custom-made burglar deterrent.

Mr Sienkiewicz and his partner Rebecca Xu decided a sign shooing-off would-be burglars was the only solution after two break-ins in three weeks.

The audacity of Auckland's criminals helped spur Mr Sienkiewicz to erect the $150 sign: in the last two incidents burglars entered through windows facing busy Dominion Rd.

Both burglaries came barely a year after the house was cleaned out for a first time in December 2004.

Ms Xu said police did not respond quickly enough to burglary complaints. In her native China, police investigated "straight away".

Burglars who injured their victims risked the firing squad, she said.

Ms Xu has her suspicions as to who carried out the latest burglaries. She has seen a number of 10 to 15-year-olds who could have been be casing the place.

She feels the sign is a subtle reminder to police that they should respond to burglaries faster, but it has little other effect.

"I don't feel much different, but my husband feels safer.

"When police come in, they only ask if you have insurance ... if you do, that's lucky.

"That's not good enough, they should catch them."

Mr Sienkiewicz said the sign was his way of launching a pre-emptive strike against burglars.

In his home town in Poland he went 20 years without being burgled, a fact he attributes to military training for teens, and prison sentences that include hard labour.

Mr Sienkiewicz reckons convicted burglars should spend 10 years after release wearing GPS bracelets.

But until such pro-active measures are implemented, he will just have to hope his sign does the trick.

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