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West Midlands Police

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How safe is your house?

How safe is your house?

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Interactive Safer Home

Victim Support

Police victim support

Having your home broken into is a traumatic and distressing experience. What should you do? What inquiries will the police make? Below, we give you the answers to those questions and explains what will happen if your home is burgled.

What should you do?

If someone is trying to break into your home, phone 999. We will send help as quickly as possible. If your home has been broken into but the offenders have left, call central switchboard on 08451135000. An operator will connect you.

Before calling the police, get following info:

  • Name, address, contact phone number, details of where burglary taken place
  • Name age address of owner and where can be contacted
  • If known, please give time of crime and type of property
  • Any witnesses and if you think you know who’s responsible for burglary

The person taking details will let you know if a police officer will visit (Discovering intruders have been in your home will undoubtedly distress you. You may feel our response to your call is not as fast as you would like but sometimes there are other victims who need our help more urgently. We will get to you as quickly as we can.)

The intruders may have left some clues so try not to touch anything before the police arrive.

Act Quickly

  • Do not touch or clear up as you may remove important evidence left by offenders.
  • Take a note of stolen items (including serial numbers) and any damage to your home.
  • If cheque books or credit cards have been stolen, tell your bank or credit card company immediately.
  • If you are insured, contact your insurance company and ask for a claim form.
  • " If official documents such as your passport or driving licence have been stolen, tell the issuing authority as soon as possible.

What enquiries will the police make?

The police will do everything possible to find those responsible. The officers taking the details will give you a crime report with details of how to find out about the progress of your case. If appropriate, arrangements will be made for a scenes of crime officer or a detective to visit you.

How can you protect your home against a repeat burglary?

Research shows your chances of being burgled again are fairly high. Therefore it is vital that you carry out repairs immediately. But don't just repair the damage - improve security at the same time - especially at the weak point where the burglar entered. Make it harder for someone to break into your home a second time.

Will you qualify for compensation?

Apart from your household insurance there is no automatic source of compensation for people whose homes have been burgled. But if the offender is arrested and charged a court may make a compensation order against them.

How can you get help from Victim Support?

Victim Support is run by trained volunteers who can offer you practical help and advice as well as a caring 'listening ear'. The police automatically tell Victim Support about all cases of house burglary, theft from a person, robbery, arson, assaults and racial harassment. If you do not want to be contacted by a member of the scheme, tell the officer dealing with your case. If you prefer, you can contact them yourself at a later date.

For details of your nearest Victim Support scheme telephone 0845 3030900 or visit the website

If you need basic advice on what to do if you've been burgled, call our pre-recorded telephone advice line on 0121 6266663