CCTV helping to catch Laois shoplifters

Crime Latest figures revealed

CCTV helping to catch Laois shoplifters
By Lynda Kiernan lynda.kiernan@leinsterexpress.ie @laoisnews

Burglary and theft figures in Laois have dropped by a third since last year, with the exception of shoplifting, which rose by 20 percent to 72 crimes this spring.

The rise is caused by the increase in security cameras, according to Garda Superintendent Joe Prendergast, reporting figures to the Joint Policing Committee meeting last Monday June 20.

“Portlaoise is quite central, with two prisons, and so a lot of people are coming and going. There is good CCTV in shops, so they are able to detect and report more thefts,” he said.

Just one aggravated burglary took place in Laois from January to March.

“It was on the Carlow side of Laois, and there is an active investigation underway, with progress hoped,” he said.

Two took place in the same period in 2015.

There was a big drop in burglaries from the likes of houses and sheds, from 165 last spring to 112 this year, down by 32 percent, “a positive trend,” the Supt said.

The crime of interfering with a vehicle dropped from six incidents to four.

Robberies from a person, which means a threat of violence, dropped from six to five.

“Three of these have been dealt with, the two others are being worked on,” the Supt said.

Robberies from an establishment rose from zero to two, while other types of general theft, which would include oil from tanks, more than halved, from 167 last year to 71 this year.

Thefts from a vehicle dropped from 98 to 77, while thefts from a person such as pickpocketing, dropped from 13 down to 5, down 62 percent.

There were 22 cars stolen in spring last year, but this year that halved to eleven.

There were however four bicycles stolen, compared to none in spring 2015.

Overall crimes involving property fell by 32 percent.