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(Oak Bay Police)

Oak Bay police are asking residents to remain vigilant as home break-ins have increased dramatically this summer compared to 2018.

Between June 1 and Sept. 3, Oak Bay police received 19 reports of residential break-and-enters in the municipality. In 2018, the detachment only received 18 break-and-enter reports for the entire year.

Police are now asking residents to keep an eye out in their neighbourhoods for anyone acting suspiciously and to take extra precautions while away, as nine of the robberies occurred while the homeowners were on vacation.

The warning follows Saanich police's similar break-in advisory that was issued earlier this summer. 

Between March and July, Saanich police say they received nearly 20 reports of homeowners returning from a trip "to find their house ransacked." 

"The capital regional area has had a rash of B&Es," said Oak Bay police in a release Tuesday.

"All departments are working collectively together to identify the suspect(s). The police are requesting the public to be alert of any person(s) or vehicle in their neighbourhood that appear to be out of place."

Besides homes, police say there has been a steep rise in thefts from vehicles in the Victoria area.

On average, thefts from vehicles have increased 30 per cent this year compared to 2018, with the Rockland neighbourhood seeing a surge of up to 236 per cent

"We are keeping the public updated on crime trends in their neighbourhoods so that they can work with us to reduce the likelihood of victimization," said Victoria Police Chief Del Manak last week.