Calls for more police after crime increase

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Public calls have been made demanding more policing in the area following an increased spate of crimes in Bridlington.

Recent reports of break ins, criminal damage and assaults have sparked demands for a higher police presence in the town and for more to be done to look into these crimes.

Bridlington’s Mayor, Cllr Cyril Marsburg, said: “Bridlington is in such a lovely area but recently there has been so much crime.

“Police seem to be thin on the ground and there is a problem with the 101 number, people can’t get through and the police don’t turn up.

“Where I live there is quite a bit of crime and there’s just no police presence – not even PCSOs. Crime is being reported all over the place.”

“I’m getting on a bit now and I cross the road when I see a gang of lads.”

Pictures posted online show damage caused as well as CCTV footage of suspects.

One Bridlington resident posted graphic pictures on Facebook after he was assaulted trying to stop four culprits breaking into a van.

The photos show cuts to his face and was shared more than 500 times.

Many are now calling for more action to be taken by the police and for an increase in police presence in the town.

But due to budget cuts to policing from Central Government in recent years, Humberside Police lost a quarter of its workforce between 2010-16.

Keith Hunter, police and crime commissioner for Humberside, said: “It is impossible to deliver the same level of service under those pressures, that is what we have been experiencing in recent years, a straightforward lack of resource where it is needed.”

He has been working on a local and national level to improve financial resources available for the force to enable the Chief Constable to start to raise police numbers.

He said: “Last year I used financial reserves to fund 50 new Police Officers and PCSOs to enable the force to establish Early Intervention teams to target the individuals, families and locations creating the most demand on the police. One of those teams is based in Bridlington.

“Humberside Police has recently embarked on a recruitment campaign for 200 additional Police Constables to join the force in the next 12 months, and there will be more to follow.

“Obviously these take time to recruit and train, and it may take a long time to get back to the level of officers we had in 2010, if ever, but everything that can be done is being done to put more officers back into communities to deal more effectively with the type of issues being experienced in Bridlington and elsewhere.

“Communities all over the Humberside Police area are making their voices heard demanding more police resources and I fully support them.

“I am representing their views to the government and I would urge everyone to support greater funding for the police service and let those who question it know the strength of your feelings.”

In the last week Humberside Police have made 10 arrests in Bridlington.

A spokesman for the force said: “Our message is clear – we will not tolerate any disorder in Bridlington.

“As residents are aware, we are in peak holiday season with large volumes of visitors to the area.

“This can bring an annual increase in crime and whilst figures show that that the number of burglary offences and incidents of criminal damage are down from August 2016 levels, there has been a rise in theft from unattended vehicles in Bridlington.

“We would therefore urge everyone to keep valuable items out of sight and ensure their vehicle is secure to deter opportunist thieves.

“We take all reports of criminality extremely seriously, prioritising the most serious incidents.”

During the school holidays, 46 individuals have been arrested and detained at Bridlington Police Station for offences including arson, criminal damage, assault, burglary, vehicle crime, public order, supply of controlled drugs, shop theft, breach of criminal behaviour orders and drink driving.

He added: “Your local police officers, in partnership with the East Riding of Yorkshire Council Anti-Social Behaviour Team, are currently prioritising groups of youths who are engaging in anti-social behaviour in Bridlington and are patrolling residential areas to deter and prevent crime.”

Community Policing and Early Intervention teams are available in the community and residents are encouraged to approach and speak with officers about incidents or call 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

Terry Luty, treasurer of Bridlington Crime Prevention Group (BCPG), said has seen an increase in people interested in Neighbourhood Watch groups and what is going on in Bridlington.

“For many it’s reassuring knowing that someone is looking out for you – especially for older people.

“The advantage now is that we have emails and text messages and its easy for people to stay up to date.

“Recently the Facebook group has gone up with 45 new members in the last few days. More people are become concerned about crime.

“What is concerning at the moment are some comments on Facebook groups, I wouldn’t say vigilantes, but people saying they’ll take the law into their own hands.

“We are doing it the right way and have the backing of police in Bridlington.”

For people interested in finding out more email terry.luty@gmail.com

They are also organising a public meeting for Thursday September 14 for people to get more information on Neighbourhood Watch and BCPG.