Police are urging the community to be vigilant and protect themselves against thieves this summer and holiday season.
Hamilton City tactical crime unit sergeant Paul McRoberts said opportunistic crime can rise with warm weather and more people out and about.
McRoberts said cars and properties can become a target, so people should find ways to avoid their Christmas packages or valuables items being left out in the open.
“With Christmas shopping ramping up and increasing online purchases, ensure you have your packages delivered to a secure location like your workplace, or the rear of your property, or select a time you will be at home for delivery.”
Police are aware of three cases in Hamilton in the past week where bank cards have been stolen from inside vehicles, McRoberts said.
“In one case more than $20,000 worth of items was taken from the vehicle including tools, a radar detector, an iPhone and two heat pumps.”
Almost $1000 was spent across six transactions using three separate cards stolen from the three vehicles, McRoberts said.
“Police are also aware of several packages being stolen from doorsteps and visible spots on private property. In two cases, packages were stolen from the front porch of properties in Enderley and Baverstock.”
Waikato Police are making inquiries in the five above cases, including viewing any available CCTV footage and speaking to any witnesses.
McRoberts said there are ways people can equip themselves with tools to prevent themselves, their car or house from becoming a target.
Best ways to prevent theft:
• Take valuable items and important documents out of your vehicle.
• Always lock your vehicle.
• Park in a well-lit area – or better yet a garage.
• Consider installing security cameras.
• Consider installing a vehicle alarm, if it doesn’t already have one.
• Get packages delivered to a place where someone will be home to receive them or to a work address.
• If you do have deliveries made to your home, make sure you’re going to be home or have a secure location where they can be left.
• Be smart when disposing of packaging, so passersby can’t see if you’ve been buying expensive items.
If you see any suspicious or illegal activity or are a victim of theft, try noting as much detail as possible and contact police on 111 if it’s happening now or 105 if it’s after the fact.