Lostock Hall man sleeps 'with hammer by his bed' following attempted burglary using 'lock snapping'

The culprits snapped the lock with a screwdriver and pliers, loosened it with pliers then popped it out and dumped it, according to the property owner's girlfriend.
The culprits snapped the lock with a screwdriver and pliers, loosened it with pliers then popped it out and dumped it, according to the property owner's girlfriend.
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A Lostock Hall woman has said her partner now "sleeps with one eye open and a hammer by his bed" after would-be burglars attempted to break into his home.


Beth Sharples said her 28-year-old partner, who wishes to remain anonymous, was left shaken after the culprits used a technique called "lock-snapping" to try to access his property in Watkin Lane, Lostock Hall, last month.

Would-be burglars used a technique called"lock-snapping" to attempt to access a property inWatkin Lane, Lostock Hall.

Would-be burglars used a technique called"lock-snapping" to attempt to access a property inWatkin Lane, Lostock Hall.

The 22-year-old added: "He's afraid they will come back. It still really distresses him. He’d only bought the house three months prior and it's really terrified him. He sleeps with one eye open and a hammer by his bed."

Lock snapping involves applying force to a lock and tampering with the mechanism using tools to unlock it.

In this incident, the offenders tried to access the house from the back door using household tools, according to Beth.

She added: "They didn't actually get into the house but there are now security cameras up, floodlights and a padlock on the back gate. There are also blinds and curtains up, as we didn't have them originally. A new anti-snap lock has been put in and deadbolts added. We’re also building the back wall higher so no-one will be able to jump over."

Residents have taken to Facebook group, Lostock Hall Community, to share similar stories of attempted burglaries in the town in the past three months while two incidents have been reported to police.

The first incident occurred in a property in Brownedge Road in October. Damage was done to the lock on the patio doors before the perpetrator smashed the door but failed to gain entry.

The second took place at a house in Doodstone Nook early last month. Locks were removed from the conservative doors and some cash was stolen.

But police said there was no evidence, witness accounts or CCTV footage for either attempt.

Sergeant Anthony Burgess added: "Lancashire Police are investigating a spate of burglaries that occurred early to mid–December around South Ribble and Preston. In response, individuals have been targeted, leading to arrests of who we believe are responsible. This has resulted in a decline in reports of this nature and investigations continue to secure future prosecutions.

"Over the festive period we are continuing to deploy patrols in and around the areas that have been effected and are employing disruptive tactics to minimise offending behaviour."

Officers are also warning people to take extra care surrounding security this Christmas.

Sergeant Burgess added: "The festive period, coupled with the darker evenings, unfortunately can result in increased offences.

"Please can I use this opportunity to remind the public to take a common sense approach to their own personal and property security. Ensure that your windows and doors are locked and do not leave valuables on show. Please be especially careful about advertising your comings and goings on social media."