Royston Rural Watch -April 2021

PC Mark Ellwood 371 & PCSO 6531 Penny Tomsett, PCSO Chris Brabrook 6522

Sgt Jon Vine 1841

Our non emergency number 101

On the Beat –

Are you and your bike ready for summer?

• Police are encouraging the public to check that their bicycles and motorbikes are roadworthy.

• Throughout the two-week campaign, officers will be out on patrol across Hertfordshire, engaging with bikers and cyclists.

With the weather warming up and lockdown restrictions easing, police are encouraging the public to check their bicycles and motorbikes are roadworthy before taking them out.

The appeal from Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire police forces comes ahead of a national 2 wheels campaign, which runs between 12 and 18 April.

Throughout the two-week campaign, officers will be out on patrol across Hertfordshire, engaging with bikers and cyclists.

Chief Inspector Simon Tabert said: “Bicycles and motorbikes may not be roadworthy after being locked up over the winter, even if they were good condition on the day they went into storage.

“Tyres can deflate over time and parts can seize so it is very important that people check their vehicles carefully before riding them. It is far better to fix an issue before setting off on a journey than discover a fault while out riding and potentially be involved in a collision.”

While the Government’s stay at home rule has ended, people are reminded that they should minimise domestic travel and not take long journeys unless absolutely necessary.

As well as ensuring pedal cycles and motorbikes are fit for summer, riders are urged to check they have the right equipment and that it is fit for purpose.

Anyone interested in learning more about motorcycle safety can attend one of this year’s Bike Safe workshops which are delivered by the police and start next month.

Protect your vehicle this spring

•Operation Feline launched to help drivers secure vehicles

•Catalytic converter theft on the increase

•Free security marking service offered to local drivers

Hertfordshire Constabulary is urging drivers to make sure they keep their vehicles secure this spring following increases in motor vehicle crime.

Crime in general has fallen since the first lockdown began, however there has been an increase in certain types of vehicle crime. Thefts from motor vehicles increased 20 per cent in March (up 59 from 302 in March 2020).

Theft of catalytic convertors has also risen with over 700 offences in the last six months* (1 October 2020 – 31 March 2021) compared with 454 in the same period in 2019/20. However, in the last two weeks there has been significant drop in the number of offences reported apart from in the Stevenage, North Herts and Dacorum areas.

Keyless thefts of vehicles also continue to be an issue. This is where thieves use a device to bypass a vehicle’s security system, by using the signal from the vehicle’s key fob to unlock and start the engine.

Devices can also be used to clone key fobs if a criminal manages to get access to a fob. There have also been several reports of a scam targeting vehicles being sold privately, where criminals arrive to view the vehicle and switch the key fobs with a replica. They then return at a later time and steal the vehicle using the stolen fob.

Inspector Nicola Dean from the Constabulary’s Crime Reduction Unit said: “Most types of crime have remained low during the last year, but criminals have been targeting vehicles, either for items inside the vehicles or their catalytic converters, which they sell for the precious metals used to build the units. The criminals have been especially targeting hybrid models of Toyota and Honda brands so I would advise owners these types of vehicles to get their catalytic converters security marked and invest in a catloc device to deter thieves.

“We have also had an increase in the theft of keyless entry vehicles, with thieves using electronic devices to boost the signal from the vehicle’s keyless fob. If the key is close enough to the vehicle, even if it is inside the home, the device can detect the fob signal and use it to open and start it. There’s a number of steps you can take to prevent this but one of the most effective deterrents is an old-fashioned steering wheel lock.”

Hertfordshire Constabulary has teamed up with garages around the county to offer free catalytic converter security marking. Security marking can help to deter thieves.

Details of the garages taking part in the security marking scheme can be found on our Operation Feline page (opens in a new window). The marking takes around two hours.

To help protect your catalytic converter:

• Don’t park your car/van half on the pavement as it makes it easier for the thieves to get underneath it.

• If you have a diesel van or other high clearance vehicles having your catalytic converter marked, or secured can deter thieves who steal them for the precious metal components.

• Park in a garage or other secure area if possible.

• Consider property marking your catalytic converter. It is cheap and may reduce your insurance.

• A sign in your window saying your catalytic converter has been marked may well deter thieves.

• Consider buying a catloc clamp to secure your catalytic converter to your vehicle and get it security marked.

To help prevent your vehicle being stolen:

• Never hand vehicle keys over to a third party or leave the vehicle unattended at a valet parking, car wash or other parking places, where criminals can gain access to the vehicle and code a key electronically.

• Consider fitting an ‘OBD safe’, a secure lockable device that fits over the vehicle’s on board diagnostic (OBD) port, in the vehicle cabin. This prevents criminals using software to code a key from the vehicle.

• Consider fitting a dual band tracking device that works on VHF/UHF and GPS, to make it more difficult for the tracking signal being blocked.

• Criminals can also employ remote/keyless entry jamming equipment so make sure your car is locked by trying the door before leaving it.

• Ensure that ‘home’ on your vehicle ‘Sat Nav’ is shown as the post code of your local police station and not your actual home address.

• Use an approved* steering wheel lock and never leave your vehicle unlocked – even for a moment

Man summoned to court in connection with hare coursing incident in North Herts

• The incident occurred in North Herts.

• A 32-year-old man was arrested.

• Anyone who witnesses suspected hare coursing is asked to contact police straight away.

A man has been summoned to court in connection with a hare coursing offence, following an investigation by Hertfordshire Constabulary’s Rural Operational Support Team (ROST).

Police were called on the afternoon of Monday 4 January following an incident on private land in North Hertfordshire.

It was alleged that several sight hounds had been used to pursue game on the land, contrary to section 30 of the Game Act 1831.

A 32-year-old man was subsequently arrested.

He was released on bail and has been summoned to appear before Stevenage Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday 5 May.

If you believe you have witnessed hare coursing taking place, please dial 999 straight away.

If a crime is not currently in action, you can report information or incidents online, speak to an operator in our Force Communications Room via our online web chat or call the non-emergency number 101.

Local Crime Information

G4E - Ashwell, Hinxworth, Bygrave, Newnham and Caldecote

Theft from Motor Vehicle, Bacons Yards, Ashwell - Between 5pm and 10pm a vehicle was broken into. The passenger window was smashed and a rucksack containing a laptop and other electrical goods were stolen. 41/15379/21 Refers

Theft from Motor Vehicle, Station Road, Ashwell - Between 1st March to 10th March a vehicle was parked on the roadside in Station Road. The vehicle was approached and two holes have been drilled into the petrol tank. 41/17279/21

Theft from Motor Vehicle, Hodwell, Ashwell – Overnight on 21st March two number plates were stolen from a vehicle parked in Hodwell. 41/20529/21

G4D – Barley, Barkway, Reed, Therfield, Kelshall and


Theft of metal, Willow Close, Reed - On 20th March at 1.34pm a van approached a property in Willow Close, Reed. Metal was kept outside the property for disposal and the offenders removed this with out permission and made off. 41/20090/21 Refers

G3C - Sandon, Wallington, Rushden, Clothall and Weston

Outbuilding Burglary, Clothall – Between 12th and 16th March a outbuilding which is being renovated was broken into. A window was pulled open and saw bench was stolen from within. 41/18818/21

Burglary, Woodland Meade, Weston – Between 1th and the 18th March a property which at the time was unoccupied was broken into. The property was entered without the owner’s consent, a messy search was conducted unknown if property was stolen. 41/19512/21

Theft of Metal, Mill End, Sandon - On 25th March at 1am a noise was heard outside the property, The IP saw two males but to dark for a description. The men were seen removing plants from a copper plant pot and removed the metal. 41/21752/21

Your local Neighbourhood Police Teams website

Useful Links

Royston Rural Neighbourhood Team Tel – 01438 757935

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