Crime hits Crystal Waters
By ADRIAN MILLER
RESIDENTS in Yamba's Crystal Waters are living in fear after a spate of break-ins.
The Daily Examiner spoke to numerous residents on Friday who had been victimised, as well as hearing reports of many more.
Most people reported being burgled through the front doors or windows of their homes. Security screens were cut open to enable entry.
It also appears the burglars are bold, with most robberies occurring while people are at home.
One resident was so outraged he erected a sign outside his house notifying people of the break-in.
'Warning: thieves operating in the area,' the sign read. 'This property entered on Sunday 4th of April at 7.30pm via the screen door.'
The owner said he painted the sign as a warning to others.
"This has been going on for weeks and weeks and they (the thieves) are doing here, there and everywhere," he said.
The pensioner said the thefts had many people scared.
"There are a lot of terrified people," he said.
"My wife is absolutely terrified when she's here on her own."
Another resident, who has been burgled twice since Christmas, said residents were preparing to take matters into their own hands.
"It has been said that we're going to have to get a group together and bash the Christ out of them when we catch them," he said.
"When we came here seven years ago you could leave your car unlocked and your home and windows unlocked and it was no problem ? it's different now."
Yamba police Constable Steve Pope said there had been roughly 14 break and enters reported in the past month.
Const Pope said police empathised with residents and were doing all they could to curb the robberies.
"We know it's happening and we know it's a problem and we are obviously trying to do something about it," he said.
"With our own station here, with Maclean and with the help of other agencies within the Coffs/Clarence command, it is something we are trying to target."
Const Pope said police had already implemented strategies which had proved effective.
"We're proactively out there in the community at the moment and (recently) we haven't had one break and enter reported," he said.