The fight by police to curb Leeds’s high-profile burglary problem comes under the national television spotlight tonight.
Despite a dramatic drop in burglary rates, the city still has some of the worst break-in figures in the country.
In January an insurance company named one Leeds postcode – LS13 – as the worst in the country for burglary-related insurance claims.
Channel 4’s Cutting Edge documentary Burgled focuses on police efforts to tackle the problem in what it calls “Britain’s most burgled neighbourhoods”.
Chief Superintendent Dave Oldroyd, who leads work on burglary for police in Leeds, contributed to the programme.
He said the force agreed to take part to show the work being done and to “help people understand the processes involved when someone has been burgled”.
He added: “Burglary is a problem crime in our communities that can have a great impact on the victims and it is our job to track down those responsible and to bring them to justice.”
Huge amounts of money have been ploughed into tackling burglary in Leeds since 2010, when spending watchdog the Audit Commission issued a ‘red flag’ against the city’s authorities, an indication that the problem was out of control.
Chief Supt Oldroyd said work with prisons, the probation service, councils and other organisations was helping to get a grip on the crime. “This partnership approach to both helping people stop offending and dealing robustly with those who consistently offend has been successful in Leeds in recent years,” he added.
“Last year burglary was reduced by 30 per cent – there were over 2,300 fewer victims of that horrible crime.
“We aim to keep burglary as a priority and we still have much work to do.”
Programme-makers spent time on the road with police teams dedicated to targeting burglary and interviewed victims and offenders. They saw how police are using academic research to predict when at where crimes will occur.
The Channel 4 website said: “Armed with state-of-the-art technology and some of the most innovative crime prevention techniques in the country, Leeds’ police are determined to get crime figures down and are starting to see real results.”
The programme airs at 9pm.