A MOTHER who had laptops and a digital camera stolen during a night time burglary has pleaded with the thieves to hand them in – because they contain precious family photos.
Louise Cairns’ house in Shirecroft Road, Westham, Weymouth, was raided as the family – her partner Niall Poulter, her 11-year-old son William and her three-year-old daughter Eleanor, slept upstairs.
Two laptops, an Alienware and a Dell, a Fuji digital camera, a Samsung touch-screen phone, jewellery and cash were all stolen, with police believing the thieves gained access through an unlocked kitchen door between 12.45am and 8am last Sunday.
William suffers from Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and Eleanor suffers from severe allergies which require constant treatment, and Miss Cairns said the camera and laptops contained special family photos.
Miss Cairns said: “Everything they touched they took, but they will be lucky to get anything for them because they aren’t worth much in terms of money but they mean so much to me.
“It’s just horrible, why would someone do something so awful?
“The fact that they came into my home where my children were in bed has horrified me.
“It has left me feeling so shaken and paranoid, every time I leave the house I have to come back and triple check that the doors and windows are all locked.
“Before it was taken, I always thought it was just stuff, I didn’t realise how important it all was.
“I don’t care about the money side of things, the laptops are replaceable and so is the camera, it’s just I will never see those pictures again.
“I can’t afford a reward because I have to care for my daughter round-the-clock so my partner earns the money, but I just want the pictures back.
“My heart has been broken.”
PC Dave Thorne, of Weymouth police, has appealed for witnesses following the incident.
PC Thorne said: “This crime is very upsetting for the victims – especially to know that someone was in their house uninvited while they were asleep.
“I am appealing for anybody who has information that could help the investigation to contact the police soon as possible.
“I would also like to hear from anyone who has been offered similar items for sale in strange circumstances or for unusually low prices.
“I would also like to stress the importance of keeping your property secure even when you are at home.”
For crime prevention advice please visit crimeprevention.dorset.police.uk
To contact the police, ring 101 and quote the crime number C14:D29:450
In the dark
MISS Cairns also said Dorset County Council’s decision to turn off the streetlights during the night had aided the thieves.
She added: “It’s just idiocy that the streetlights are turned off. The dark allows people who want to steal things a cover of darkness. I feel absolutely frustrated.”
A spokesman for Dorset County Council said: “The part-burn streetlight project is expected to save 20 per cent from the council’s energy bills. The cost for lighting our 42,000 street lights is about £1.87 million annually – so part-burn street lights could lead to a significant saving, as well as reducing the county’s carbon footprint.
“Switch off is between 1am and 6.30am. With the good weather we are currently seeing this means the dark is only a couple of hours.
If residents have any concerns they can find more information on www.dorsetfor you.com/partnightlighting