BURGLARS are continuing to target homes across Cheshire, despite the current coronavirus crisis.

In the space of a week, police received reports of 50 residential burglaries across the county, with criminals targeting sheds, outbuildings and garages and stealing valuables inside.

Officers will continue to carry out high-visibility patrols in the local community and are carrying out a number of enquiries in a bid to trace those responsible.

Residents are being urged to think about security in their home to reduce the chances of falling foul of thieves.

Superintendent Richard Rees said: “Despite the current lockdown, which is aimed at people staying at home to help save lives and protect the NHS, it is clear that thieves are still targeting homes in Cheshire.

“Criminals adapt to situations and will still find ways to commit crime, even during difficult times like this.

“We need everyone to ensure they are thinking about security at home.

“During this period people are spending a lot of time out in their garden and clearing out their garage or shed, and I’d encourage you to remember to keep them locked and secure.

“Even if you don’t think a burglar would target your home, it’s not worth the risk.”

Residents are also advised to keep windows shut when unoccupied and keep personal items such as bikes and gardening tools stored away out of sight.

Cheshire Police also recommends that homeowners invest in strong padlocks to fit to sheds and garages, or have them fitted with an alarm.

If you have been a victim of a burglary, report it by calling Cheshire Police on 101 or visit cheshire.police.uk.