Merseyside Police is urging residents to secure their properties and keep keys out of sight after seven cars were stolen in Wirral over the weekend.
The properties in the Bebington, Moreton and Liscard areas were targeted by offenders who forced the front doors of the properties before stealing the car keys inside and driving away with the vehicle.
In each case the doors were either unlocked or only single locked, and officers are urging anyone with a double lock to make sure they are in use.
Police have issued footage of three males shown trying the handles of cars and doors in the Prenton area. The clip shows them finding car doors locked and houses double locked, so they are deterred from attempting to force entry.
“We want to prevent such easy pickings, so I want to strongly reiterate our crime prevention advice to everyone in Wirral and beyond so that your home and car keys are kept as secure as possible.
“Many double locks require the homeowner to lift the door handle up and turn the key or thumb turn lock to activate. For most double lock systems in UPVC doors, if the door handle can be pushed down, it isn’t double locked.
“If you simply lift the handle you will not fully engage all of the locks into the frame. You must also double lock the door using the key or thumb lock.
“We would urge all homeowners to do this to give themselves the best chance of protecting their property because if your door is not double locked, there are criminals who are capable of breaking into your house.
“I would urge local residents to get in the habit of checking their front doors, windows and garage doors to prevent becoming easy targets, and ensure your car keys are safely out of sight. Once doing a quick check becomes part of their routine, it doesn’t take much time at all and can save you a lot of distress in the long run.
“We would like to reassure the community that we are working to identify the people responsible for the theft of the cars, and to locate the outstanding stolen vehicles.
“If anyone noticed people acting suspiciously over the weekend, or have home CCTV or dashcam footage which may be useful to our enquiries please let us know.
“We also continue to distribute crime prevention advice to victims and residents, which is also available on the Force website.”
Anyone with information is asked to contact Merseyside Police social media desk via Twitter @MerPolCC or Facebook Merseyside Police CC. You can also call 101 or contact the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously, on 0800 555 111 or via their online form at: https://crimestoppers-uk.org/give-information/give-information.