Police answer criticism over Bexhill burglaries


Sussex Police has responded to a resident’s criticism that the force is ‘just not interested’ in tackling burglaries in Bexhill.

Joyce Heward, of Mayo Rise, says she knows a number of people who have fallen victim to thieves in the last couple of months.



At around 5pm on December 20, a friend in Beaconsfield Road had a suspicious man call at her home. First he asked to be let inside he house, then he asked for £30 and finally £10 before eventually leaving.

Two weeks later, a neighbour in the same street was the victim of a burglary in a day-time raid. The thief scaled a fence, entered through an unlocked back door and made off with a computer and phones.

And on January 8, a woman in Ninfield Road had three motorbikes stolen from her shed.

The raiders took the bikes through a nearby field and cut the lock, taking the stolen goods down Mayo Rise.

Joyce said: “I have CCTV which covers this area, and the police are not even interested.

“I have new CCTV recording equipment that covers the area and the police haven’t been in contact. She gave them my details.”

She added: “These thieves have scouts out, looking.

“How did they know there were motorbikes in her shed?

“They came prepared with bolt cutters.

“I believe the white man who knocked at my friend’s door was a scout and when she came to the door he had his story ready.

“This crime is on a daily, or nightly basis now, and the police are just not interested.

“I know six people who have been broken into in the last two months. Those are the ones I know of.”

But Sussex Police say the number of burglaries in Rother has fallen since April 1 2015, with a six per cent drop in home burglaries and a 28 percent drop in other burglaries.

Inspector Anita Turner, of the Rother Neighbourhood Policing Team, said: “I appreciate local concern as we did have a seasonal spike for burglary dwellings during December. Anticipating this in the run up to Christmas, we did mount a media and leaflet campaign aimed at potential victims, particularly in Bexhill.

“As anticipated, we were indeed hit by a linked series of burglaries but reacted promptly with Operation Fireplace, targeting likely offenders. A person suspected of committing many of the offences was arrested and is currently in custody.”

Insp Turner said two incidents – the suspicious doorstep caller and a shed break-in during which three motorcycles were stolen – had been reported to police, although it was 90 minutes before officers were told of the suspicious doorstep caller, giving police little chance of tracing him.

The victim was visited by a PCSO. CCTV footage of the motorbike theft is now being followed up, said Insp Turner.

She added: “Residents can be reassured that police most certainly are interested in tackling burglary, hence the reductions seen and our swift response once any information or evidence becomes available.”