Burglars stole our swing.

by Toby Empson

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I could not believe it, they stole our swing. The swing was not your average porch swing. This was a patio swing with a frame and canopy, all wood including the seating. It could seat three, well three slim young ones. A bit of a luxury item for us folks, an indulgence, but my wife adored this swing, I must say that I found it very relaxing too.

Whenever my wife was out back I would find her sat in our swing gently swaying back and forwards, sometimes just sitting, sometimes reading, sometimes dozing on a balmy day.

We just do not understand how they managed to steal it without anyone seeing or hearing a thing. The four pillars were set into the patio, they hacked through them close to the patio deck. That must have taken time and noise whatever they used to do the job. There must have been at least four of them to pick it up and carry it to their what? Large pick up or van? Nobody saw? Nobody knew what was going on?

It was a Tuesday daytime so many of our neighbors were out, those who were at home did not know anything about it until we told them and asked if they had seen anything. Nobody did.

Not the end of the world, it was only garden furniture after all. I sooner they take that than burglarize the house, I could not stand that.

What would our swing be worth to the thieves? With the posts sawed short it is going to be difficult to set in the ground, the seat will be too low.

Now that spring is almost here we will get a replacement. It’ll be the best part of $600 and we’ll have to find somebody to install it for us.

I know for sure that I’m going to be continually worrying that the replacement swing will stolen too. That would be worrying about lightening striking twice but how could we prevent that. A swing and canopy set into the patio should be un-stealable, but it wasn’t.

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Mar 20, 2011

Protecting Property

by: Thomas L. Norman, CPP/CSC


Dear Toby:

I’m sorry to hear about your swing. It’s surprising how a burglary can enlighten just how much sentimental attachment we can develop to what we previously thought were just things.

The property around a home can be a difficult area to protect. Frankly, you cannot effectively use alarm system devices to protect the environment outside your home (there will always be false and nuisance alarms). But if your property is fenced, nothing beats two large dogs in the yard for protection. Very few burglars will risk confronting two large dogs and they fill your heart with joy every time you come home. A single dog will get lonely and may bark bothering the neighbors. Pairs of dogs are both more a effective deterrent and keep each other company, making them both happier.

Thomas Norman is an International Security Consultant working primarily in international conflict areas and has authored several security industry books. His most recent is “Risk Analysis and Security Countermeasure Selection” – CRC Press


Mar 19, 2011

Nothing is un stealable.

by: Martin (Editor)


Hi Toby,

Thank you for sharing your burglary story with us. I’m sorry to read of the loss of your swing. Just goes to show that nothing is un stealable even if it is set into the patio.

The thieves struck on a weekday daytime, they know that many folks will be at work, school or wherever, that’s why they were able to get away with your property unseen.

Garden furniture of all kinds gets stolen, the best way to protect it is to anchor it down, you did that but the thieves got it anyway.

Motion detectors triggering an alarm and or security cameras may be advisable. They would give protection even just as a visual deterrent. Warning signs and stickers would be good too.


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