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The Loop

Why police in England are asking golfers to use this machine -- and how it helps lower crime

November 16, 2015

All golfers are used to marking their golf balls, but now golfers in England are being encouraged to mark their golf clubs as a way to cut down on crime. As part of a new property-marking drive, York authorities are targeting golfers to partake as a way of making their prized possessions less of a target for criminals, according to the North Yorkshire Police.

"Golfers shouldn't have to put up with their extremely valuable clubs and other equipment being targeted by thieves," York Police inspector Lee Pointon said. "Marking your property is one of the most effective ways to protect yourself from being a victim of crime. Eagle-eyed criminals will spot the permanent engraving and realize that the property will be too difficult to sell on. Being able to trace the ownership of stolen property can also provide evidence that is vital in securing convictions."

The marking is done with a dot peen marking machine that creates a unique number that's visible on the club and is then entered into a database, making a golf club easier to track if it's stolen. York authorities are offering free sessions at local golf clubs where golfers can have their clubs marked.

"Our dot peen machines have already been hugely successful, and we're on course to mark more than 2,000 items of property in York, including cycles, gardening tools and electronic devices," Pointon said. "Only last month we were able to return a stolen bike to its rightful owner, who had the foresight to get it marked."