Cardboard cut-outs are the Peel District Crime Prevention Unit’s latest weapon against opportunistic crime leading into the busy Christmas period.
Picture: Sgt Paul Trimble, officer-in-charge of Peel Crime Prevention and Diversity
The unit’s newly-appointed officer-in-charge, Sgt Paul Trimble, said the life-sized police officers would act as visual deterrents and would be set up at shopping centres around the district from this week.
‘‘Over the past few weeks there has been an increase in the number of bag thefts in shopping centres,’’ he said.
‘‘Shoppers and store employees must be vigilant about their surroundings, keep handbags and personal property close by and keep handbags zipped up.’’
Sgt Trimble said shopping centres became hot targets for bag thieves on the prowl at this time of year.
‘‘Shoppers only need to leave their bag unattended for a minute and it opens a door of opportunities for offenders,’’ he said.
Target, Coles and K-mart will be among the first stores at Rockingham City Shopping Centre to have the simulated police presence.