Thefts, burglaries and car break-ins more frequent

A man was caught attempting to leave a Dunedin retail store without paying for a trolley-load of goods, as reports of theft and burglary spike in the week in before Christmas.

Senior Sergeant Craig Dinnissen, of Dunedin, said the man was caught on Monday as he tried to leave the Maclaggan St branch of The Warehouse.

That same day, two young females were caught trying to take more than $100 worth of items from the George St Farmers department store.

In Brockville yesterday, an 18-year-old man was arrested after breaking into cars, and faces charges including burglary and thefts from vehicles.

Also reported on Monday was the theft of cash from three vehicles in Andersons Bay.

Snr Sgt Dinnissen said a Lees St house was broken into and a laptop, tablet and camera taken.

Police were following a positive line of inquiry based on items left at the scene by the offender.

A driver (56) who crashed into two vehicles in Taieri Rd on Monday will face criminal charges after recording 745mcg of alcohol per litre of breath, nearly triple the legal limit.

Acting Inspector Peter Graham, of Invercargill, said Southland police were stepping up patrols this summer to prevent burglaries, which peaked in January, as people left town.

''If you're lucky enough to be heading away for some sunshine, please secure your home,'' Insp Graham warned.

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