Sgt Graham Erskine was the Scottish Police representative at the West Communtiy Council’s meeting last night in the Community and Arts Centre. He spoke about recent crimes that have grabbed the headlines locally:
“There are eight thefts by housebreaking which are basically break-ins to private dwellings although there are one or two commercial premises as well. So, there is a prolific housebreaker, if not more than one prolific housebreaker in our area operating and hasn’t been caught yet. Of the eight incidents that I’ve researched five were in the Auldearn area and several of those addresses are adjacent to one another so somebody has seen Auldearn as rich pickings and has targeted that area and the pattern appears to be that he will, he or she, will violate premises during the day which is a bit unusual and not what we expect. Counter intuitive we expect these people to attack vacant premises during the dead of night under the cover of darkness but that doesn’t appear to be the case so just imagine how brazen that person is!”
Westies Chair, Rosemary, asked Sgt Erskine: “Are they taking the same things all the time?”
“I looked to see what sort of things were being stolen from premises, from houses. Cash and jewellery crop up time and time again although there was the one you were talking about, motorbike, motorcycle leathers helmet, so they are not only just taking the vehicle itself but the leathers and balaclava etc. Cash, clothing, alcohol and tobacco , in one of the houses there was computer equipment as well. That used to be what housebreakers would target, electronics, televisions, flat screen televisions, music systems, that kind of thing; but no longer, it really is difficult to get rid of that kind of product so they’re aiming for cash and jewellery – high value items that don’t take a lot of carting away. […] They are still ongoing inquires, including forensic inquiries. Obviously that takes times to establish a forensic profile.”
Rosemary intervened again: “Was there anything in Nairn at all?”
“Moss-side, Geddes and Grigorhill, Auldearn.” Replied Sgt Erskine. “But there’s no way we can be complacent at all […] We could well see break-ins within the town of
Rosemary then urged everyone to be vigilant and report anything unusual to the police.
Sgt Erskine then added: “I can guarantee that if we get a report of suspicious activities or a suspicious person or vehicle then we will open that out. I can’t guarantee that we will on every occasion identify who the suspicious person was but the onus is on the police to make sure that if there is an investigative opportunity there we seize that and if they are involved in the crimes we have spoken about they are brought to justice.”