Pickpocket warning to Christmas shoppers

POLICE are warning Christmas shoppers to be on their guard against pickpockets.

Constable Siobhan McCandlish, community safety officer ar Kirkintilloch police office, said: “As we draw closer to the festive season, opportunist crimes can increase.

“Women can be more vulnerable to bag snatches and handbag dips and have their purse stolen. We would advise ladies to carry handbags that strap across the body rather than a shoulder bag which is easy to grab.

“It is also a good idea to wear your handbag under your winter coat to keep it out of sight. If you do use a shoulder bag carry it close to your body, ensure that it fastens securely, preferably with a zip, and keep it closed at all times to prevent someone from dipping their hand in and stealing your purse.

“You should not carry large sums of cash or be seen to count through a large amount of notes.”

She added: “Men can also be at risk of wallet thefts.

“They are generally taken from the back trouser pocket as they are visible and easy to remove so keep your wallet out of sight and reach, perhaps within an inside jacket pocket.

“Protect yourself and your money and stay safe this winter.”

Operation Jingle Bells, an innovative crime busting initiative which was launched by the police and Bearsden and Milngavie crime prevention panel last month is also still running. As part of the campaign about 500 shoppers in Asda, Bearsden were given bells to attach to their bags, which ring if anyone tampers with them. They also hope to visit Tesco in Milngavie, The Fraser Centre and Douglas Academy - the dates have not been confirmed yet.