By using the website you agree to our use of cookies as described in our cookie policy.

New device in fight against burglaries

Source: Western Leader


Police hope a new kit that marks property with a unique DNA liquid will deter burglars in McLaren Park.

There have been 570 burglaries in the area of Henderson since 2005.

Its new neighbourhood policing team hopes the SelectaDNA kits that they're distributing to 40 residents will help drop that figure.

The kits feature a special synthetic DNA solution that homeowners, schools and businesses can use to mark valuable items such as jewellery, televisions, computers and antiques to make them easily traceable.

Stickers can also be placed on items and windows to show burglars they're more likely to be caught.

The product is used in more than 30 countries including the United Kingdom, Australia, South Africa and the Netherlands where the kits were provided to 2500 homes in Amersfoort.

Burglaries fell 40 per cent in the period from January to April 2009 compared with the same time the year before.

Sergeant Mike Hough and SelectaDNA representatives have distributed the kits to residents in McLaren Park who have been repeat victims of burglaries.

"One address in Imperial Place has been burgled five times in the past four years," Mr Hough says.

"Thirty-three other addresses have been burgled more than once in the area," Mr Hough says. While the number of reported burglaries is high many others go unreported because of the low value of the items stolen or because the victim didn't think police could help.

When the McLaren Park neighbourhood policing team started researching its community in August last year it found burglary was one of the residents' biggest concerns.

Mr Hough says the kits are one way of aiming to address these concerns and protect against further burglaries.

SelectaDNA managing director David Morrissey says while the product is designed to be a deterrent it will also help police trace items of stolen property. Each bottle of solution has a unique DNA makeup which is registered on the SelectaDNA database so stolen goods can be returned to owners.

Police can also use it as a resource for solving crime. UV light on a marked item will show up in blue.

The tool was tested in Randwick Park in Manurewa in 2009 where 1000 kits were distributed to homes, schools and businesses and there was a 60 per cent reduction in burglary in six months.

Mr Hough is hoping the same will happen in McLaren Park.

If the kits are successful police will consider rolling out more in West Auckland.

All Waitakere schools received a SelectaDNA kit in 2010.

Back to 2012 News Stories