By Luke Voogt
A strategy that beat overnight store burglaries in Ocean Grove is on the way to Geelong, police have revealed.
Police will first encourage Geelong West traders to close stores without leaving money inside as burglary rates surge on Pakington Street.
Leaving money in-store was turning shops into targets for burglars, said Geelong Senior Constable Andrew King.
“I was talking to a retailer about it this morning. I think it’s a problem around all of Geelong.
“You can’t go leaving a day’s takings or a float in stores overnight because you’ll get offenders taking advantage of that.
“Every retail burglary I’ve been to, I’ve recommended they don’t keep money on the premises.”
The Ocean Grove Voice reported in June that police introduced the initiative after a burglary crimewave in the town’s centre.
“It was clearly seen as a soft target and we had to bring in something that would restrict easy access to cash,” Sen Const King said.
“It was quite successful.”
Bellarine police Sergeant Mick Knight confirmed a “dramatic reduction” in shop burglaries in Ocean Grove.
Sen Const King worked with the Ocean Grove Business Association to introduce the initiative and hoped to unite Geelong West store owners with their own traders’ group.