Sheffield & South Yorkshire

Metal thefts in Sheffield rise by 72% over five years

The number of metal thefts reported in Sheffield have increased by 72% in five years, police figures have revealed.

According to South Yorkshire Police, 1,633 metal thefts were reported in year up to April 2011 compared with 949 in 2006.

The figures were released by South Yorkshire Police under the Freedom of Information Act (FOI).

The Firth Park And Firshill districts had the highest number with a total of 822 thefts since 2006.

The Hillsborough and Middlewood areas had the second highest with 694 cases.

Experts believe the crime has become more common because of an increase in the price of metal.

Chief Superintendent Bill Hotchkiss, from South Yorkshire Police, said: "We're increasing patrols in those areas that have a high number of thefts like Firth Park And Firshill for instance.

"We've got resources out on the streets to stop suspicious vehicles and suspicious persons. We have officers checking the records of scrap metal dealers.

"So we're trying to get our staff more proactive in terms of stopping vehicles and asking the relevant questions."

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