MEMBERS of the public have been advised to be aware of their personal belongings when out shopping, especially in large supermarkets, following reports of distraction thefts within the last few days.
Tayside Police is advising shoppers to take every precaution to reduce the chances of their purses and handbags being lost or stolen. People carrying handbags, or indeed shopping bags, should never let them out of their sight and they should try to be aware of those around them at all times.
It should also be borne in mind that handbags should be kept secured with their contents hidden from prying eyes. It is important that bags are not left hanging at their owner’s back or side on or within pushchairs, or hooked onto shopping trolleys. Ideally, they should be kept closed and placed against the front of their owner’s body.
In addition, shoppers should not take more money than they need when shopping. Expensive items should be left at home, rather than carried in a purse or handbag. Purses should only be taken out of handbags when absolutely necessary – such as when paying for items at the till or check-out, or when taking cash from an ATM.
Claire Taylor, crime prevention officer for the Angus area said: “Don’t make it easy for the thief by leaving purses and other valuable property in clear view in bags or trolleys. Ensure your property is secured and hidden away. Only carry the necessary money you require
“If you are a victim of this type of crime, contact the police immediately and also remember to cancel all credit and debit cards with the relevant issuing banks as soon as possible.”
Anyone with information should contact Tayside Police on 0300 111 2222 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.