The Operation Furnace team received a visit from Dr Alan Billings, South Yorkshire Police and Crime Commissioner on Wednesday, 6 March 2019.

This is a newly formed tasking team based in the Shepcote Lane facility, Sheffield.  It was formed after a recent spike of residential burglaries in Sheffield and has been tasked to investigate burglaries and reduce the threat of burglary to residents in Sheffield

Dr Billings said: “I fully support this attempt by the police to tackle this obtrusive and distressing crime.  Everyone’s home is an extension of themselves so that a burglary is an act of violation.

“The visit was very informative and I must thank the team for explaining how they work so clearly.

“As a resident of Sheffield, I share in the anxieties we all feel when burglary seems to be on the rise.

“There are offenders that burgle houses, but with this excellent investigative work, which includes mapping of the hot-spot areas and identifying known individuals, the incidents have already reduced dramatically.”

The Commissioner also visited an elderly lady, who lives alone, and whose home had been targeted recently.  An intruder had gained entry to her property, whilst she was sleeping and stolen a number of personal items, including her wedding ring.

Dr Billings added: “The lady we visited was extremely shaken.  Her property had received significant damage and she was having to stay with family members.  I don’t think people who break in to others people’s home realise the devastation that they leave behind.  She had nothing but praise for South Yorkshire Police and the offender has now been arrested.”

Detective Inspector Jamie Henderson heads up the Op Furnace tasking team said: “The team are working hard to reduce the number of residential burglaries in Sheffield and already they are showing significant results.

“We would still ask residents to ensure that their properties are secure, by locking their doors at all times, even when home, leaving keys out of sight and not in doors or close to letter boxes and keeping windows locked.”