The head of a new police unit in Bridlington says he wants to make life “uncomfortable” for criminals in the town.
Insp Jonathan Roe, who heads the new Bridlington Neighbourhood Tactical Unit, will especially target those who commit retail crimes, dwelling burglary and criminal damage.
One of the unit’s first initiatives was to target shoplifters in a plain clothes operation last Thursday, aiming to deter thieves from operating in Bridlington town centre.
Intelligence led policing meant that several individuals were robustly challenged by NTU Officers, frustrating any intention they had to commit shoplifting offences.
Insp Roe said: “Although there were no arrests made, the operation was a success as we are hoping to make things particularly uncomfortable for criminals. We are a new unit, and when policing in times of austerity, it is important to deploy people in the right way and if word is out that we are operating in plain clothes and deterring shoplifters, then that is a exactly the result I want.
“I’ve heard people say that shoplifting can be a victimless crime but that’s clearly not the case when you have small family businesses. Also, even if it is a large national company, thefts will eventually raise prices for everyone.”
The new unit, which will support Inspector Grant Taylor and the Bridlington Neighbourhood Policing Team, has been in action for around a month.
“We are here to supplement the great work already carried out by the NPT and the Incident Response Team. We are an extra resource and our presence will just make it even more difficult to commit crime.”
Despite crime falling in Bridlington in the last year, as the biggest town in the East Riding the area makes up for around a third of the crime in the C Division.
“Bridlington is a lovely place, and crime is not on the level it is in bigger towns and cities,” continued Insp Roe. “But there are certain individuals who seem committed to behaving anti-socially and it’s those who we will concentrate on.
“I’m really pleased that already certain crime types are down. Instances of criminal damage are a real nuisance and they are an issue for me. I am really keen to address that and I would welcome any information that people have about any of these incidents and who is responsible.”
Insp Roe, 47, comes to Bridlington from the force’s CID training branch. He has previously worked in CID in Hull, and the Major Incident Team.
He said he was delighted to be returning to Neighbourhood policing after a twelve year gap, having previously been a community Sergeant on Bransholme.