Western Rural Police Round-up for Week Ending 25th January

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Just over a week ago, an accident in Ince caused the death of a male who was from the resident travelling community in Elton. The deceased was a prominent member of the community and arrangements are currently under way to arrange a local funeral. The date of this has not yet been confirmed. In keeping with cultural tradition, a fire has been lit, which will be maintained by the family until the funeral. Some concerns have been raised about both the fire and the potential impact that the arrival of a large number of funeral attendees may have on the local community. Local police are working with the family to make appropriate arrangements to manage both the large numbers of people that are expected to attend the funeral and also to manage the fire. If anyone has any concerns, they should contact their local officer.

Last Sunday, a bike shop in Helsby was broken into overnight and a large number of cycles were stolen. Due to the nature of the crime, it is possible that the bikes were wheeled to a nearby location, before being loaded onto a vehicle. If anyone has any information either about the burglary, about parts of bikes or labels being found nearby, or about where the bikes may be being sold on, then please contact the police.

There have been four reports about thefts from vehicles this week. Two were in Pulford, which has been targeted for similar offences over recent weeks, one offence in Tarporley and one in Tattenhall. At least two of these thefts were from unlocked vehicles! There is no real excuse for leaving expensive valuables such as laptops, phones and handbags in unattended cars or for not locking them. Please take a few moments to remove all valuables and make sure your vehicle is locked, even when parked on your driveway.

There have been a couple of new attempted frauds reported this week. One was a call, purporting to be from a bank, offering a 'refund', but requiring personal information to be provided. The other was a letter from a fictitious debt collecting agency, trying to threaten the recipient into sending a cheque. Please be cautious about any unsolicited communication requiring you to provide personal information or monies to be sent.

On Tuesday, a resident had put some metal objects outside the front of their house, intending to dispose of it in due course. The items were subsequently taken, without the householders permission. Similar thefts have been reported over recent weeks, all across the rural area. Please do not leave metal objects outside the front of your house — opportunistic thieves' may take them as scrap metal.

Finally, officers had cause to attend at an address in Christleton on Saturday. Once inside, they found that the upstairs of the address had been adapted to accommodate the large scale cultivation of cannabis. Two males have been arrested and further enquiries are on-going. Such enterprises require the use of special heating lamps, extractor fans and watering systems. Properties used for such activities will often have windows permanently blacked out, people attending at odd times of the day, fans constantly running and strong smells of cannabis. If you have suspicions about any locations, please pass your concerns on to your local officer or to crimestoppers.