POLICE officers from the Operation Wagtail team are continuing their work to reduce crime in rural areas.
Responding to an increase in house burglaries across the Hambleton and Richmondshire Safer Neighbourhood Command last week, they were out in force over the bank holiday weekend targeting offenders.
A key part of the operation involved extra patrols on the main routes into the district, including the A1 and A19.
Supt Amanda Oliver, Safer Neighbourhood commander for Hambleton and Richmondshire, said: “From enquiries we believe the recent increase in house burglaries has been committed by thieves travelling into the area.
“The message to them is simple – we are watching you and when you are caught we will use every tool available to bring you to justice.
“This operation sends a very clear signal to every criminal who believes they can commit crimes against our communities that their offending will not be tolerated.
“I would like to reassure residents across the district that although we have seen a small rise in the numbers of burglaries, Hambleton and Richmondshire remains one of the safest places to live and work in the country.”
A number of the crimes have been two-in-one burglaries, which is when thieves break into a house to get their hands on the keys to vehicles parked on the drive.
These offences tend to be organised and planned and are usually committed by offenders from out of the county. Often the vehicles are stolen to order and only a small number are ever recovered.
Residents can play an important part in helping prevent this type of incident by hiding keys, bags and valuables out of sight and away from windows, doors and anywhere on view from the outside.
Anyone who has information about people committing this type of offence can contact North Yorkshire Police on 0845 6060247 or alternatively telephone Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.