News

Stock theft a big iss-ewe

By Olivia Duffey

Locals are being encouraged to install security measures on their properties by a young local farmer who alleges there have been multiple cases of missing stock and suspicious behaviour in the Deniliquin district.

The most recent to go missing are his five Poll Dorset rams and 32 Merino ewes, reported as missing, and suspected stolen, to police on February 18.

The farmer, who has asked to remain anonymous, claims people don’t realise ‘‘how big the issue actually is’’.

“A lot of this is going unreported and people don’t know about it,” he said.

“It is only when you talk to other farmers that you realise this is happening a lot in the area.

“When our sheep went missing we checked with neighbours, stock agents and other farmers, and they have not turned up anywhere so we strongly believe they have been stolen.”

There are a variety of security measures you can take to reduce the chance of this happening to you.

“I encourage people to lock their gates, check stock on a regular basis, even install cameras and always report suspicious behaviour,” the young farmer said.

“I would also encourage people to publicise if you have missing stock or there has been suspicious behaviour on your property so other farmers in the area can be alert.”

Detective Sergeant Rural Crime Prevention Team South Zone coordinator Damian Nott said it is vital to report, even if you are not sure.

“We can’t investigate what we don’t know,” he said.

“Reporting an incident, no matter the victim’s perception of the seriousness, enables us to make a timely response and investigation and to identify hotspots and areas of interest so we can then deploy our resources to the best effect.

“We do urge victims to report matters, even if you are unsure, so we don’t miss vital investigative opportunities.”

Trespassing on rural properties will not be tolerated. You must have permission to enter a private property.

For more information on rural crime, visit www.police.nsw.gov.au/safety_and_prevention/safe_and_secure/rural_crime.

You can report crime via the website or call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or the Deniliquin Police Station on 5881 9299.