THIEVES who target homes over the Christmas period in West Yorkshire are in for a shock this year as many homes are being protected by a new DNA forensic marking system that can easily link criminals to the scene of the crime.
In addition to offering free security assessments as part of the Home Office Safer Homes initiative CASAC (Community Action and Support Against Crime) is also offering residents of West Yorkshire the benefits of SelectaDNA forensic marking, allowing them to mark and protect any valuable Christmas presents that they have bought for family and friends.
Other property marking schemes in this area did not prove effective last year, with 22 burglaries happening in Leeds on Christmas Day 2008. Mean-spirited burglars struck when residents went out to visit relatives, leaving their newly-opened presents unprotected.
This has meant that organisations are now turning to SelectaDNA, a 2nd generation forensic marking technology, which links criminals to crime scenes and provides an unbreakable chain of evidence in a court of law. The liquid is specifically DNA-coded to each residential address and also contains thousands of unique microdots, allowing the Police two ways to identify marked items.
If marked items are stolen and later found they can be linked directly with the home they were stolen from, not only allowing the items to be returned to the rightful owner, but also increasing the chance of convicting the thief.
Popular Christmas presents such as mobile phones, games consoles, laptops, iPods, TVs and jewellery can be easily marked with SelectaDNA, and the special DNA code not only proves ownership but makes it very difficult for thieves to sell on the stolen items for profit. Forensic marking does not damage the items in any way.
For over 10 years, CASAC has been working with the residents of West Yorkshire, the Police and other local agencies to reduce crime and the fear of crime, and improve community safety.
Throughout December, CASAC’s safety engineers, together with West Yorkshire police, will visit homes and show people how to use SelectaDNA. They will also run security checks on the homes they visit and provide burglary reduction advice. Residents can also register on the CASAC website (http://casac.org.uk/) to receive kits.
Kevin Horler, Contract Manager for CASAC said: “Christmas is a special time of year for many families and the last thing they want to be thinking about on Christmas Day is whether they are going to be burgled.
“By offering SelectaDNA's advanced crime reduction system to residents of West Yorkshire, and offering our burglary reduction advice to residents, we are confident this will deter thieves in the first instance and reduce festive crime overall.”
For further information and images contact: Angela Singleton, Press Officer for Selectamark.
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