Police have issued a warning to motorists after a rise in thefts from cars across Darlington.

Officers said thieves have been targeting vehicles with tools and other work equipment inside and have seen a spike in cases.

Drivers have been advised to make sure cars are locked and valuables kept out of sight, or removed from vehicles when leaving them unattended.

Chief Inspector Dean Haythornthwaite, from Darlington Police, said: “Vehicles left unattended with valuables left on display or unlocked are a magnet for opportunistic criminals, who will often try a number of door handles until they find one that has been left open or with valuables left on show.

“It only takes a few seconds to make sure you’ve locked the door and removed all valuables from within, but it could mean the difference between having your vehicle broken into and it being left alone by thieves.”

Officers have also advised parking in a busy, well-lit area, using a garage if you have one, closing windows and doors and keeping driving documents at home rather than in the car.

They will be handing out free ‘crime prevention equipment’ at an event at Firthmoor Community Centre next Thursday (April 24).

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