Thursday, November 8, 2012
This month Chief Inspector Chris Mead takes a look at a day in the life of Cambridgeshire police officers...
24 hours in Policing
This month I am looking at a snapshot of policing over a randomly picked 24-hour period. I hope you will see as the day unfolds below, there is a lot going on and that it provides a glimpse into everyday policing on an average day across Huntingdonshire.
The 24 hours start just after midnight, with officers being called to St Neots and a report of a couple fighting in their home, on arrival it was a verbal argument so no arrests but a report was submitted by officers to the Domestic Abuse Team.
As this is going on, officers are called to Sawtry, where a concerned neighbour hears banging from next door and, fearing burglars, calls police. On their arrival officers find the elderly neighbour had fallen and was banging to raise the alarm. Officers called an ambulance and he was taken to hospital.
Just after 1am, officers attend an address in Huntingdon on behalf of Essex Police seeking to locate a 15-year-old girl who has been reported missing from home. She is located.
At 3am, officers are carrying out patrols of rural villages and areas of St Neots in relation to burglary offences. They are also knocking on doors and checking on the curfews of some of our burglars who are out on bail. All are in albeit often grumpy at being woken in the night. Sadly for them, I have no sympathy.
At 3.40am officers are called to commercial premises in St Neots by the fire service where it is feared offenders may have damaged fire alarms.
The next call comes in just after 6am, from an intruder alarm activation at a local garden centre which turned out to be a false activation. Officers are then called to Huntingdon by a lone female reporting a male exposing himself outside her window. Officers reassure the lady but fail to find the offender. Officers link it to other potential offences of this type in the area currently being investigated by CID.
At 7.30am, officers attend a collision on the B660 at Winwick where a car has gone off the road into a ditch. The occupants were out and uninjured. At 09.09hrs, officers attend Little Paxton to a report of a panic alarm but again a false activation. Officers are then sent to Huntingdon where a van has been broken into overnight and at the same time officers attend the B1043 near Stilton to a report of an abandoned transit vehicle believed linked to theft in Northamptonshire and also two local commercial burglaries. Scenes of Crime Officers attend and the vehicle is forensically examined.
Officers are then called to Huntingdon to a report a dispute over vehicle ownership and then on to Brampton, to a report of persons stealing metal which turns out to be a false call with good intent as the “offenders” turned out to be council employees.
Officers then attend a broken down car in a dangerous position on the A14 at Godmanchester. Officers assist the lone female to arrange recovery.
It is now just after 10am and officers are called to St Neots High Street to a collision between a car and motor bike. At the same time, officers attend a local school to a report of a pupil who may have a knife and then on to another school where an ex-pupil is being a nuisance and refusing to leave.
At 1126hrs, officers are called to Huntingdon to a report of a missing person where a lady suffering from dementia has seemingly disappeared. She is found 45 minutes later.
At 1149hrs, officers are called to a burglary at Alwalton where the occupants are currently away. Officers are then required to return to the Police Station to arrest a male who has a warrant out for his arrest.
During the afternoon, officers attend Yaxley and Hamerton to calls about poachers and hare coursing. Officers attend Hemingford Grey to a report of youths kicking a ball and making a nuisance of themselves, at the same time as officers attend a report of concern for the occupant of a house at St Neots who had not been seen. Officers forced an entry and found the occupant had died. Officers complete a report for HM Coroner.
Calls later to St Neots for a report of ten persons fighting with baseball bats sees all available officers dispatched and five persons were arrested. While this is happening, officers are called to a female caught shoplifting, again in St Neots.
Its late afternoon and officers attend a drunk male threatening staff at Huntingdon Job Centre, as well as a report of tractors leaving mud on the road near Ramsey.
During the evening, officers are called to persons breaking in to a building at Sawtry, again a false call with good intent, a fight between neighbours at Brampton and a drunk male getting into a car in Huntingdon.
Officers are then called to nuisance youths in Warboys, where they confiscate and dispose of the youngsters’ alcohol. They then go on to a male being assaulted with a baseball bat in Ramsey, before a silent 999 call in Somersham and finally back to Ramsey to a disorderly female who is then arrested.
The 24 hours ends as it started with a domestic dispute in Brampton, before the latest round of bail checks get going.
Officers responded to calls for service from across the district covering a range of different incident types. In all, 94 incidents were called in which is about average for a Friday. Officers helped the vulnerable, arrested the disorderly and violent and targeted burglars and prolific offenders. Much of this is unreported and not visible to the majority of the public. I hope sharing this reassures you that the police are busy and continue to target people and problems, which is why we now have a 7.2 per cent reduction in crime this year.
Total number of Incidents for October - 3009
Average number of incidents per day – 97. On average, 17 required an immediate response.
673 crimes recorded - 6.6 per cent down on October 2011.
Average number of crimes per day is 22.
Headline Crimes – 50 dwelling burglaries, 78 car crimes, 2 robberies, 62 non dwelling burglaries, 58 shopliftings , 100 criminal damages and 129 offences of violence of which 43 were domestic related.
Total arrests 304
Drink drive/traffic related – 13
Theft – 62
Burglary – 24
Drugs – 19
Criminal damage – 11
Violence/public order – 102
Arrest warrants – 14
Immigration offences - 10