Despite crime reduction Mildenhall still a burglary hot spot

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A police operation launched in response to a dramatic rise in domestic burglary across Forest Heath has failed to cause a significant reduction in the troubled Mildenhall area.

Between April 2012 and April 2013 domestic burglaries in Forest Heath rose by 39 per cent compared to the previous year, with 205 crimes reported.

The biggest increase was seen in the Mildenhall area, which incorporates 13 surrounding villages including Red Lodge, Tuddenham, Icklingham, Barton Mills and Worlington, where 64 crimes were recorded, a 121 per cent increase.

Suffolk Police launched Operation Drawbridge to tackle the rise in burglary and since April a reduction of 41 per cent has been recorded across Forest Heath, compared to the same period in 2012.

However this decrease is not mirrored in the troubled Mildenhall neighbourhood where incidents have fallen by only 7.7 per cent, which translates to one crime.

A police spokesperson said: “Changes in recorded crime often vary significantly across districts and across the county. Intelligence-led operations can lead to significant developments in certain areas and the prosecution of one prolific offender can have a big effect.

“Geographical trends are continually monitored to allow us to identify any areas of concern.”

Inspector Matt Rose said: “Tackling domestic burglary remains a key priority for the Constabulary and a range of pro-active initiatives are underway in this area.

“The number of recorded incidents in the Forest Heath district saw a rise in the latter part of last year, but due to the dedicated work being carried out, I am pleased to say that our recent figures show a significant drop.

“Pro-active days of action targeting those involved in acquisitive crime have been held and a number of significant arrests have been made.”

Brandon and Lakenheath, which incorporates 10 surrounding villages including West Row, Beck Row and Eriswell, saw a 59 per cent increase in domestic burglary between April 2012 and April 2013, with 81 crimes reported.

Between April and June this year a 38 per cent reduction was seen in the area compared to the same period last year, with five fewer crimes recorded.

Insp Rose said: “I would urge all residents to ensure they take simple measures to keep their homes secure. Especially during the warmer summer months, don’t be tempted to leave doors and windows open, which provide the opportunity that burglars need.”

Police have asked that any suspicious activity be reported by dialling 999.