Push to report thefts


One of Queenstown’s top cops is urging people to report their items being nicked, saying a drop in crime stats may not reflect reality in the resort.

Posts lamenting stolen items are appearing near-daily on Queenstown social media pages, with everything from skis to cars being targeted.

Earlier this week, Queenstown cops were appealing for witnesses after $7000 worth of stuff was stolen from two shops in The Landing shopping centre at Frankton on Sunday.

And a digger and $5000 worth of goods and tools were stolen in two separate burglaries at Queenstown construction sites late last month.

Yesterday, a 35-year-old man was arrested after a dawn police raid on a Shotover Country home. He’s been charged with multiple theft and burglary charges and remanded in custody by consent until Monday. Police haven’t given details of what he has allegedly stolen, though, or from where.

Senior sergeant John Fookes says in the past couple of months there’s actually been a 21 per cent drop in reported thefts compared to the same time last year. He’s urging people to tell police if their things go missing.

“We want to know about it. It’s through that that we can address the issue.”

But he’s also warning people to be wary of people posting about stolen items online.

“Over the years we’ve prosecuted quite a few false complaints of thefts, particularly from skifields.”

He reckons Queenstown’s low crime rate means people might take a more “casual” approach to security.

Work’s being done to determine the extent of theft issues around tools and Fookes urges anyone who notices people trying to “move” those types of items to contact police. “If they’re being targeted, there must be a market for it.”