POLICE believe a lone offender may be responsible for a burglary crime wave that has blighted Hartford for the past month.

Officers have identified a pattern to a spike in break and entries where cash and jewellery has been stolen while occupants were at work.

A spokesman for Northwich neighbourhood policing team said: “We think a lot of the Hartford burglaries are being committed by the same person, because it’s the same mode of operation.

“They know whether someone is out of their house or not, and are taking their chances.”

Officers dispatched the police helicopter and a dogs unit in Hartford on Thursday, December 12 following a string of burglaries in Cromwell Road, Abbey Way, Sandfield Lane and Stone Manor Lane.

Detectives and crime scene investigators are combing affected properties for a lead on what they believe to be one criminal, acting alone.

Thursday was the second spate of burglaries in Hartford in a month, following a spike in offences in early November.

Crimes have primarily taken place between 3pm-8pm. Patio and conservatory doors have been smashed or forced to gain entry.

Northwich inspector, Paul Loughlin, has urged residents to immediately contact the police with information if they believe an offence has been committed or may be in progress.

“We want calls about any suspicious cars or people,” he said.

“Sometimes people ring family first if they have concerns or don’t like to bother us as they we think we are too busy.

“But we want the calls. We want to keep Northwich safe.”