independent

Sunday 31 August 2014

Holiday homes being targeted

Wexford 'rich pickings' for burglars

Esther Hayden

Published 19/03/2013 | 05:38

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Superintendent John Roche pictured in Gorey garda station.

Wexford is seen as 'rich pickings' in terms of burglaries because of the high number of holiday homes in the county.

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Speaking at last week's meeting of the County Wexford Joint Policing Committee, Chief Superintendent John Roche, pictured right, said that burglaries had dropped this year by 13 per cent compared to the same period last year.

Despite the drop in burglaries, Chief Superintendent Roche said the issue remains a problem, adding that holiday homes in particular are being targeted by opportunistic thieves.

'Although burglaries are down it is still a problem. Friday is the day when most burglaries occurred, and they are being committed by travelling criminals as well as our own home-grown criminals.

He said there were more than 20 per cent of unoccupied houses in Wexford, the majority of which are holiday homes, and as such Wexford is seen as 'rich pickings' for burglars.

He said that while statistics showing a drop in burglaries are 'satisfying', Chief Superintendent Roche said 'it is early in the year', adding that an increase in the number of reported burglaries is usually noted between St Patrick's Day and the May Bank Holiday weekend.

Cllr Padge Reck said that thieves are listening to the death notices to know when to hit weddings, while Chief Superintendent Roche said social media is also aiding criminals.

'People just need to think crime,' he said. 'I don't want to get a bunker mentality but people on social media tend to say too much.'

He agreed with Cllr Reck that there had been instances when people who had been bereaved had been burgled.

'That's the calibre of criminal you are dealing with unfortunately,' he said.

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