Residents are being asked to stay vigilant as police reveal that thieves are targeting valuable items left in parked vehicles or in insecure homes and garages.
As a result officers across Northumbria Police will be carrying out targeted patrols in key areas to deter thieves as well as continue enquiries to locate suspects and recover stolen items.
Chief Superintendent Neil Hutchison is asking communities to work with police as a number of the thefts and burglaries reported came as a result of cars and homes being left insecure.
He said: “We know the public are concerned about these types of crimes. I want to reassure people that overall crime is lower under the current circumstances while people are staying at home.
“However, we have noticed a recent increase in thefts as the weather has improved and in a number of these cases people have left valuable items outdoors or on display near open doors or windows.
“These are opportunistic thieves who are trying the doors of every car on a street or looking for homes that have left windows open during the sunny weather in the hope that they find an opportunity to steal.
“I fully understand that while people are at home helping to tackle Coronavirus they will have windows and doors open in nice weather, but I want to advise everyone that thieves are not always deterred by the possibility that you are home, please take care of your possessions.
“We will be carrying out targeted patrols and look to arrest those responsible.”
“So the public need to work with us and take extra steps to make sure your valuables are secured to prevent yourself falling victim to crime.”
The public are advised not to leave valuables in their car and not to leave car keys in porches or near to the front door.
Anyone who notices anyone acting suspiciously in their neighbourhood is asked to report it online via the Northumbria Police website.
Always dial 999 in an emergency.