Police warn homeowners on ‘wood on gate’ burglary scam

French police have warned homeowners about a new burglary scheme involving pieces of wood placed on gates.

1 September 2017
By Connexion journalist

The scheme sees burglars place small, inconspicuous pieces of wood on to entrance gates into houses or driveways, in such a way that the wood would fall off if the gate were to be opened normally.

This allows the perpetrators to monitor whether a gate has been opened in a set amount of time - depending if the wood is still in place or not - so they can judge whether a house is being accessed regularly, or if its inhabitants are away.

A house that has not been accessed in a given amount of time would then become a prime target for burglary, as the criminals would feel far less likely to be disturbed in the act.

The scheme was picked up by the Police Nationale 78 and spread via other gendarmerie social media, such as the Gendarmerie de la Marne, in the post below. 

The gendarmerie warned residents to be attentive, and advises you to alert the police immediately if any incident occurs, or if you notice any such pieces of wood around your property.

Anyone coming to the police about a burglary or suspected burglary should provide some ID at the time of reporting, and also make sure to warn your bank about any theft or suspected theft of cards or cheque books, the advice said.

Thefts should also be declared to your insurance company, ideally within two days of the incident taking place.


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