House burglaries in Kettering have increased by almost a fifth in the past year.
New figures show that 245 home burglaries took place in the town between June 2011 and May 2012, 37 crimes more than the same period the year before - an increase of 18 per cent.
Northamptonshire Police have identified Pipers Hill, William Knibb, and the All Saints wards in the town as the worst hit, and have stepped up patrols in those areas.
Chief Inspector Chris Hillery, commander for Kettering and Corby, said: “The biggest issue we have had is with burglaries, particularly in the Pipers Hill, William Knibb and All Saints wards.
“In the vast majority of cases the burglaries have taken place at insecure properties where people have left windows and doors open or unlocked, or they have forgotten to close them when they have gone out or to bed.
“Now the hot weather has arrived I would urge people to make sure their home is secure and that windows and doors are closed and locked. Not doing so can assist those offenders intent on committing crime.
“We are targeting known offenders of this type of crime as well as increasing patrols in the areas that have seen an increase in incidents in a bid to deter further offences.
“We also have a focused operation taking place across the force to tackle violence offences.
Crime in total in the town was up by five per cent during the last year, with 232 acts of felony taking place in Kettering.
A total of 4,631 crimes took place in 2011-12, 232 more than 2010-11’s total of 4,399.
Ise Lodge saw the biggest crime spike of 38 per cent.
Only Pipers Hill and St Michaels and Wicksteed wards saw reductions.
Burglaries of places other than homes also rocketed up by 58 per cent in the town, with 87 more crimes committed - from 150 to 237.
Sexual offences were reduced though, from 76 in 2010-11 to 56 in 2011-12, a fall of 26 per cent.
Chief Inspector Hillery added: “Crime across Northamptonshire fell by five per cent in the past 12 months compared with the same time period the previous year, which is heartening to see.
“There were some significant falls in drugs and sexual offences.
“Unfortunately, we did see a some increase in crime in certain areas, something we are in the process of tackling.”