Jewellery and gold targeted during series of Tonbridge burglaries
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Families are being reminded of the steps they can take to protect their homes from burglars seeking to steal expensive jewellery and gold.
Over the past month there have been several burglaries of this nature where thieves have targeted properties in the Tonbridge area, with many of the victims from Asian households.
Kent Police is investigating at least 10 break-ins which may be linked, and which have taken place between 16 October and 2 November 2023.
Get advice at crime prevention evening
Officers will also be holding a crime prevention event at Hillview School in Tonbridge on Tuesday 14 November, to offer advice and information to help keep residents’ homes safe and secure.
This will take place from 6pm and anyone is able to attend.
Inspector Terry Newman of the Tonbridge Community Safety Unit said: ‘You can never underestimate just how much of an impact burglary can have on the lives of those affected. Victims feel violated and uneasy in their own homes, and the matter is made worse when the items stolen are not only valuable but also highly sentimental and of cultural significance. ‘I would encourage anyone with concerns around their property or possessions to visit us at Hillview School. We want to help residents ensure their homes are secure and that it is as difficult as possible for would-be offenders to strike. ‘For example, we would strongly encourage families to keep large amounts of cash or gold out of the house such as in a safety deposit box at a bank. If you do need to keep high-value items at home then keep them in a good quality safe, bolted to a solid wall or floor and hidden in a cupboard.’
Most burglaries happen on weekdays in daylight when you are more likely to be out. As well as locking up each time you leave, you can also:
Keep keys, cash, and expensive items out of view.
Use timer switches on lights and radios to make your home look occupied.
Try to restrict access to the rear of properties and keep gates locked and boundaries secure.
Consider installing security lights, doorbell cameras and CCTV.
Defensive planting is a useful deterrent and can help to protect vulnerable areas such as under windows.
Lock away tools and garden items that could be stolen or used to break into your home.
Be aware that decorating your home at times of religious festivals may draw attention to the property and could potentially advertise the presence of gold and jewellery within.
Take extra care in the run-up to special occasions such as religious holidays and weddings. If a celebration is occurring, this may attract criminals.
Photograph and security mark pieces of jewellery – laser engraving your jewellery with your name and the serial number acts as a hallmark unique to you. Many jewellers and the Assay Office offer this service. Alternatively consider forensically marking your jewellery.