Drivers are being warned not to leave valuables in their cars as the rate of burglaries in Launceston rises.
Since July, there has been at least 136 reports of car burglaries across the North – close to 50 each month.
That figure is up from 80 incidents during the same period last year.
In what police are describing as “opportunistic crime”, offenders are targeting cars with valuables left in plain sight.
The most common items being stolen from vehicles are handbags, laptops, phones and cash.
Detective acting Inspector Craig Fox said it was important for drivers to take responsibility and eliminate the opportunity for potential offenders.
He said officers had recently searched about 50 cars in a Launceston suburb and found valuables left on the seat or on the floor in most.
“The message is to not leave valuables in your car, don’t leave your car unlocked, park in a well-lit area, and if you park in your driveway consider a sensor light and whether your car is alarmed,” Detective acting Inspector Fox said.
“If you have no options other than to leave valuables, make sure they are out of sight, don’t just put your jacket over it.
“It takes up considerable police resources when we have to investigate, and forensically examine, which is all part of our job and we accept that, but if we take away the opportunity, it makes our job easier.”
While the number of cars being broken into is on the rise, home burglaries and motor vehicle thefts are down,Detective acting Inspector Fox said.
According to the latest Tasmania Police Corporate Performance Report, serious crimes in the North have also dropped.
Of the crimes being committed, more are being solved.
The Crime Statistics Supplement released last month reported Tasmania Police had hit its highest clearance rate in more than 45 years – with more than 50 per cent of crimes resolved.
To report suspicious activity, contact police on 131 444.
To report information about a crime that has already taken place, contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.