The number of burglaries increases at Christmas

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The police consider December 24 the day with the highest number of burglaries in Austria yearly.

The Federal Criminal Police Office, therefore, warns people to be vigilant around the holidays and “use common sense.” “We have around 15 percent more burglaries at dusk on this day than on normal December days,” says Hans-Peter Seidl, from the Burglary Unit at the Federal Criminal Police Office.

There are around 25 burglaries at dusk every day
According to Seidl, there are currently around 25 daily break-ins throughout Austria. Each season (November, December, January), the figure is around 1,000 crimes. The figures regularly shoot up on the 24th. “If you look at the statistics from previous years, the 24th of December always stands out,” said Seidl.

The stolen goods also differ, according to the expert. “The pattern is completely different than usual,” explains the expert. “There is not as much jewelry and not as much cash in proportion as usual during the year, but also items of daily use,” says Seidl. “It’s rather unusual for someone to take a food processor with them.” This is because cash, jewelry, or cell phones are normally preferred.

Twilight burglaries at Christmas: Tips against thieves
The criminalist, therefore, advises not to make it too easy for thieves. “Every year, we have cases where ladders, armchairs, or tables left in the garden have been used to get into houses.” Furniture should, therefore, be locked in the garage at dusk, says the investigator. Pretending to be there is also useful. “If I pretend I’m not at home, a burglar probably won’t come,” said Seidl. “They want to go into the apartment in peace and quiet and pick out everything.” The police officer, therefore, advises using timers to control lights and similar functions on televisions or radios. However, it is too late to equip your apartment or house with security doors or locks. “You won’t get them delivered until March. You have to do it earlier,” says Seidl.

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