Improving Safety Year-on-year reductions in East Cheshire’s crime figures demonstrate the strength of policing here, says the Cheshire Police Eastern Area crime manager, Detective Chief Inspector Darren Hebden. Nearly three thousand fewer people were victims of crime in 2009-10 than in the previous 12 months. Since Cheshire Police re-organized in 2005 crime in Eastern Area is down by thirty per cent. DCI Hebden said the continuing improvement is due to targeting of criminals responsible for burglary, theft and other offences, allied to work done by Neighbourhood Policing Teams in partnership with other agencies. “East Cheshire is a safer place than it was and is becoming even more safe”, he said.
Bottom to Top Cheshire Constabulary is now number one in the league table which reflects people’s satisfaction with policing services. Less than three years ago the force was in last place. The introduction of Customer Service Desks has played a major part in the improvement. Last year Eastern CSD contacted 50,000 victims of crime or anti social behaviour by telephone, voicemail or letter. It is recognized by other Police Forces as a model of customer service and is used for pilot projects and fact-finding visits.
Lock-up Warning as Burglar Gaoled Police Officers said the case of a man who carried out more than twenty sneak-in burglaries in Congleton underlined their repeated warnings to people to lock up. The man was sent to prison for three and a half years. Detective Constable Darren Harper said, “We put a lot of time and effort into catching people like this and collecting evidence against them, but one third of all burglaries in this area involve the criminal simply walking through an unlocked door. People must accept responsibility for the security of their own homes.”
Hitting the Right Note Police Officers made it clear they would not allow drunken hooligans to disrupt the Nantwich Jazz, Blues and Music Festival over the Easter Weekend. Inspector Bob Hassall, in charge of Nantwich Neighbourhood Policing Unit said, “We have powers to stop people drinking in the streets, where appropriate and we will order people out of town when necessary. Thousands of people come into town to enjoy the festival and we will not allow that to be spoiled by a few who see it as an excuse for drunken violence.” Cheshire East Council assisted with staff so that a CCTV facility could be monitored throughout the festival.
Message for Irresponsible Drivers Police say a custodial sentence imposed on a teenage driver who made off after a collision should send a clear message to other drivers who ignore the law. A baby travelling in another vehicle was injured in the collision, which happened after the 17 year old stole drink from a shop in Sandbach and headed towards Middlewich. At South Cheshire Youth Court he was sentenced to six months in a Young Offenders Institution after admitting driving while disqualified, driving without due care, failing to stop at the scene of a road traffic collision, failing to report a road traffic collision, driving without insurance and shoplifting.
Purse Dipper Warning Shoppers in Crewe town centre were warned to protect themselves against pickpockets after a series of purse and bag thefts. Police Community Support Officer Paula Davies said, “There are simple precautions people can take to beat purse-dippers. Being aware of the danger and keeping alert is the key thing. We are on patrol in the town centre and anyone who wants advice can talk to us.”
Campus Surgeries Weekly Police surgeries have been introduced for nearly three thousand students on the Crewe campus of Manchester Metropolitan University. Police Community Support Officers Ainsley Threadgold and Colin Charlesworth say that, among other things, they will provide a bridge between students and the local community. Ainsley said, “We can give the students some insight into their effect on other people and let people outside know about difficulties the students might face. The parking problem in streets around the University is one issue where that might help.”
Hitting the (Long) Trail Dan Bennett, a Personal Safety Trainer for Cheshire Police Eastern Area is currently trekking 2,178 miles on foot along the mountainous and rugged Appalachian Trail in the United States. Dan-a former soldier- is making the journey with his brother to raise money for the Help the Heroes appeal. “Home” for five months is a tiny light-weight tent and he expects to lose at least two stone in weight. “Before and after pictures of some people who make this journey are so different you can’t recognize that it’s the same person,” he says. Dan’s progress is recorded on a website www.aquonelogcabinrentals.com/AT.html