Redbridge police call in special tactics to combat burglaries

Increased police patrols, an undercover milk float and extra officers drafted in from across north east London have helped curb a dramatic rise in burglaries.

Redbridge police were forced to call in officers from other boroughs after burglaries spiked at 24 in one day before Christmas.

Acting Superintendent Paige Kimberley says that the support of extra officers and a high profile publicity campaign helped to slash the number of burglaries by 18 per cent in the last four weeks.

Supt Paige said: “Since September 1 we have made 170 arrests for burglary, and we are continuing to increase vigilance with support from Royal Mail, BT and at one point we had a milk float carrying out surveillance.

“We are encouraging more single patrols by officers and I make sure that our vehicles drive down every back street.”

Supt Kimberley, the second most senior officer at in the borough was speaking to a meeting of Redbridge Police Community Engagement Group on Monday night.

She said: “Of all crime, burglary is the closest to my heart because it is so impactive. I have been a victim myself.”

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When Supt Paige looked at the daily crime figures on November 16 last year, she saw that 24 burglaries had been committed in Redbridge in the previous 24 hours, leaving her map covered in the blue dots that denote break-ins.

She said: “Normally someone sees something but that day there were no suspects whatsoever, and this went on for days.

“I have never seen anything like it, we had to look at this and say help.”

Borough Commander Sue Williams called in groups of officers from across north east London to target the worst hit areas, wrote to magistrates asking them to keep burglary suspects behind bars before their trial and launched a public campaign called “See it, Report it, Don’t Ignore it.”

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