Cops take to the streets to remind residents to lock up

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The streets of East Renfrewshire “have certainly been quieter” after a controversial four night action by community cops.

As reported in The Extra, East Renfrewshire police launched a campaign against opportunistic thefts, with officers out and about on nightshift for four weeknights to check doors - and wake up householders if they found them unlocked.

The move followed another spate of sneak in thefts, in what inspector Alan Dickson called “a return to old-fashioned policing”.

The communities inspector hoped that the initiative would get people talking - but some Extra readers objected, including Allan Davidson, who commented on Facebook: “I’ll be asking them politely to leave. None of their business why my door is open, no law against it.”

This week, inspector Dickson told The Extra: “We found give houses lying open, with residents including young children asleep within. We also found one garage with a range of tools and bikes lying unsecured. We gave relevant advice to each of the householders involved.

“The officers also took the opportunity to interact with anybody they found out and about. The word was well and truly spread with the feedback very positive from everyone we dealt with.”

He added: “While it is always hard to quantify preventative impact, the following weeks have certainly been quieter in terms of theft from unlocked premises than the period before.”