A few weeks back I spotted a burglary in progress on a residential street. I saw a man standing outside a broken window at the side of a property. To begin with I thought he was a work man, but my brain wasn’t convinced of that so I went back for another look. I was right too as when I went back I saw his legs disappearing through the window. I rang the police and they asked me numberous questions over the phone and at the end they said they would pass it over to the right team. I was surprised at this as I assumed they would have dispatched someone as soon as they had the address. I asked if I should hang on until the police arrived and I was told no. I got the distinct impression that no one was going to come out and he would be left to burgle in peace. I heard nothing more about the matter despite giving my details, so I don’t suppose I will be asked to give evidence as a witness either.
The whole experience got me thinking though. I assumed that a burglary in progress emergency call would be followed up by the police immediately, but it seems not. It does make you wonder what criteria are applied and what boxes have to be ticked before a police car is dispatched. I do wonder if the police have largely given up on burglaries and car crime and are concentrating limited resources elsewhere. The trouble with doing that is that it makes criminals bolder as they think they can get away with anything. It also means that less crime gets reported because the public loses confidence in the police’s ability to do anything about it. I can’t help, but think that house and car insurance premiums will go up too.