Welcome to my May’s blog update for the Eastern Counties Neighbourhood Police Area.
This is a “light touch” catch up with what we have been doing to make our communities safer. The last couple of months have been very busy for all of us on the Eastern Counties.
‘Ask Me Anything’ Public Meeting
April saw the first of my ‘Ask Me Anything’ public meetings, which was held at Waltham Village Hall on Wednesday April 8. These meetings are chance for members of the community to ask me any question and raise any issue directly with me.
The meeting was well attended, with many issues raised. The main concerns for residents were speeding in villages, breaching of HGV weight restrictions and generally traffic related matters. We have already started working on all of the issues raised and are making real progress. I will update you in my next blog. We are already planning our next meeting for the Melton Rural South beat which will be held at Somerby Memorial Hall on Tuesday 26th May at 6.30pm. I plan to complete similar events on all of the beats on the Eastern Counties over the coming months.
Off Road Bikes
After receiving a number of complaints from members of the public regarding the use of ‘off road’ bikes, officers from Harborough Station have recently been out with Northamptonshire’s ‘off road’ bike crew to areas in Harborough that have been experiencing the problem. Officers visited Brampton Valley Way, Canal Town Path near Green acres caravan site, Robert Smyth School/Burnmill Road, Great Glen, Covert Lane in Scraptoft and Harborough Town Centre.
Using ‘off road’ bikes makes it much easier to reach the locations effected by this problem, so that we can speak to the offenders and young people in the area, to educate them on this type of vehicles off road capabilities and how to use them legally. We hope to repeat this initiative again in the future.
Our Neighbourhood Priority Team
The Neighbourhood Priority team have made a number of significant arrests over the last couple of months for drugs, burglary, harassment and fraud, and shop theft. The team are committed to catching the offenders in our communities that cause the most harm and will continue to do so over the coming months. Sgt Thorley is doing an excellent job with his team focusing on the issues that our communities report to us.
Fatal 4 Operations
We have been completing a number of Fatal 4 Operations across the Neighbourhood Policing Area. Fatal 4 Operations consist of us stopping drivers who are spotted committing one of the four most common offences that result in death. The Fatal Four are driving whilst on a mobile phone, not wearing a seat belt, speeding and drink driving.
We held the first of these operations in Melton on March 10, in partnership with HM Customs and Excise. During the operation Traffic Offence reports were issues as follows; eighteen for driving without a seatbelt; one for defects on the vehicle ; one for unfit load; one for no MOT; and one for use of a mobile phone whilst driving. Vehicles were also stopped for using red diesel; having no insurance; and possession of drugs. In total we stopped 67 vehicles during the operation.
On April 27, we held a Fatal 4 Operation on Burton Street in Melton Mowbray. During the operation 22 drivers were stopped for not wearing a seat belt; five for driving whilst on a mobile phone; and two others for miscellaneous offences.
We also conducted another operation in Oakham on the 4 May, where x7 traffic offences were prosecuted using a mobile phone; four for driving without a seat belt; and one for not having valid tax. A Vehicle Defect Rectification Scheme notice was issued for a cracked windscreen.
Further events are planned over the coming months.
Tackling drug use in schools
In May, officers from our local Neighbourhood Priority Team assisted Rutland based officer PC Joe Lloyd with a drugs and contraband search at a school in Oakham, on request of the school themselves. The school were delighted with the turnout of officers, and it’s hoped that this sends a clear message that drug use will not be tolerated.
Community Volunteers on Horseback Scheme
The police community volunteers on horseback scheme continues to go from strength to strength. The volunteers have put in a huge amount of time in patrolling the lanes and villages of Rutland. Between October 2014 and March 2015, my volunteers completed 8200 hours of patrol and I would publically like to thank each of them for their continued commitment to this innovative scheme which through their high visibility patrol has helped to prevent crime, reduce speeding in rural locations and has increased community confidence.
We also have an excellent number of Neighbourhood Watch schemes across the Eastern Counties which provides vital feedback and communication with local communities. Officers across the area have recently completed their annual catch up with every Neighbourhood Watch Co-ordinator. Can I take a moment to thank all the co-ordinators across the area for all they have done over the last year.
That is it for now… and I shall speak to you all again in July 2015.
Inspector Lou Cordiner
NPA Commander for the Eastern Counties