Ilkley burglaries spate causes ‘concern’

Ilkley Gazette: Inspector Sue Sanderson Inspector Sue Sanderson

Burglars have struck at seven homes in Ilkley in the run-up to Christmas, sparking concern among residents.

Police say they are working hard to support and reassure the local community, and have increased patrols in Ben Rhydding, where most of the offences took place.

There were four daytime burglaries in Ben Rhydding, where portable items including jewellery and small electrical goods were targeted.

The thieves also took bags from people’s homes to carry the stolen goods.

Two offences took place in the evening, when thieves attempted to steal car keys from houses – on one occasion using a stick to hook the keys from outside.

In another incident, at 1.30am, burglars snapped a Europrofile-type cylinder lock and stole credit cards and a Rolex watch.

Police said two arrests had been made in connection with this burglary.

Inspector Sue Sanderson, of Wharfedale and Craven Neighbourhood Policing Team, said: “Whilst seven burglaries in three weeks is low for other parts of the force it’s quite high for Ilkley and as such causes some concern. The priority crime team at Bradford have conducted a thorough investigation into all the offences and we are working hard to support and reassure the local community.

“We have increased patrols in the Ben Rhydding area with officers working extended shifts to cover the times when incidents have occurred.

“Officers and British Transport Police colleagues have been patrolling the nearby train station which services both Leeds and Bradford and we have had support from colleagues in the road crime team and roads policing who are patrolling the routes in and out of Ilkley for travelling offenders.”

A suspect seen on December 11 was described as a white man, aged 40-50, with grey hair either shaved or balding, 5ft 10in to 6ft 2in, of medium build and wearing a short dark-coloured jacket carrying a blue bag similar to a ‘bag for life’ from a supermarket. A second suspect was said to be a white man, aged 20 to 30, between 5ft 8in and 6ft, with dark collar-length wavy hair wearing dark clothing.

Insp Sanderson advised residents to make sure doors and windows are locked, even when at home, keep valuables out of view, use an alarm if they have one, and consider leaving a light on at home.

Residents can request a crime reduction survey from police by calling 101.

Police also asked anyone with information burglaries and anything suspicious seen in the area to call police on 101, or 999 in an emergency.

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