POLICE in Gloucester are urging people to be vigilant after statistics showed that 64 per cent of homes burgled in the city in the last month were unlocked at the time.

From February 1 to March 3, 18 out of the 28 properties broken into were targeted because of unlocked or open doors and windows.

This past weekend alone burglars got into a property in Bloomfield Terrace in Linden via an unlocked back door.

A burglar walked in through unlocked front doors of houses in Salisbury Road and Chequers Road.

Sergeant Jon Testar said: "Quite simply doors and windows should be locked when you are out of the house and when inside during the day, evening and night.

"Burglars will try a number of doors until they find an unlocked house. They are unlikely to be heard and can be in and out in a few seconds, often targeting items such as mobile phones, car and house keys, cash, bank cards and other electrical items like laptop computers and tablets.

"There is often huge disruption to the lives of those victims of burglary and the ongoing emotional impact can go on for a number of weeks or months.

"The message is simple - lock your home at all times to make it harder for opportunist burglars."

Anyone with information in these cases or who wishes to speak to local officers about their security should call 101 or make contact with their local policing team via the contact pages of gloucestershire.police.uk