Budleigh burglary linked to Sidmouth crimes

‘Bungling’ culprits left clues

‘BUNGLING burglars’ who attempted to break into a Budleigh Salterton home have been linked to similar crimes in Sidmouth.

Police believe at least two people tried to force their way into a property between June 30 and July 16 - but left empty handed after it is thought they were disturbed.

Residents planning on leaving properties unoccupied for long periods of time have been urged to safeguard their homes.

PC Adam Johnson, at Exmouth CID, said the burglary showed similarities to crimes committed in Sidmouth in the last year.

He added the attempted burglary in Budleigh was a ‘professional’ job but dubbed the burglars ‘bungling’ after they left clues and evidence at the scene.

Items were distinctive and police have appealed for public help.

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PC Johnson said: “The burglars have peered through the windows. We can see clear disturbances and handprints left on the windows.

“Blinds or curtains at the window would have acted as a deterrent.”

Police believe the burglars were disturbed by an alarm and left a 20foot high wooden ladder at the scene.

Officers said the ladder was used to reach and destroy a burglar alarm.

Culprits also left behind the cloth part of a hammock, which could have been used to carry away their loot.

PC Johnson added the ‘unusual’ wooden ladder and ‘ornate’ hammock material were distinctive and urged anyone who may have sold similar items, or had them stolen, to get in touch.

He urged homeowners to protect their properties before leaving them unattended for long periods.

PC Johnson said: “Tell as few people as possible you’re going away. Use timer switches to operate lamps and television to make the property look occupied.

“Tell a close neighbour, and cancel any milk or newspapers.”

Contact police with information on 08452 777444, crime reference: KE/11/1889.