Police have urged householders to sleep with their car keys as part of a raft of crime prevention measures to protect their homes.
The warnings follow a heartbreaking raid at a house in Bradford, during which a disability car, containing six-year-old Tyla Anguige’s wheelchair and specially-made walking frame, was stolen.
Tyla, who has a severe form of cerebral palsy, is due to undergo spinal surgery this week and needs the stolen equipment to help with vital physiotherapy after the operation.
The raiders struck at the family’s home in Burnham Avenue, Bierley, Bradford, last week. It was discovered by a neighbour who saw their front door open and the living room light on.
Electrical items had been stolen from the living room and the family’s white BMW 1 series convertible, with the wheelchair and walking frame in the boot, was missing.
West Yorkshire Police advised householders to take keys to bed with them and keep them in a safe place out of sight. A spokesman said: “Don’t leave car keys, or any keys, on display on the kitchen top or in view of a window. Keep them by your bedside.”
Inspector Esther Hobbs, of the Bradford District Community Safety Partnership, said: “I would ask the public to take some simple steps to help themselves.
“Measures such as making sure doors are locked, car keys are kept in places other than near your front or back door, and making sure your burglar alarm is switched on are obvious ways to reduce the risk.”
Tyla’s mother, Chrissy Jackson, 25, has urged anyone who knows the whereabouts of the wheelchair and walking frame to search their consciences and come forward.
Anyone with information can contact Bradford South CID, via 101, or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.