Further successes for Northampton hit squad tasked with cutting crime in Northampton
Main article content
A special team of Northampton officers charged with stamping out drug dealing and its associated ills has reported further successes, helping to improve the lives of those residing in a large part of the town.
So far, 102 people have been arrested since the specialist team was formed, in connection with offences ranging from child sex abuse, child neglect, weapons, drugs and domestic violence.
The hit squad includes a police sergeant and ten police officers, formed in July when analysis showed a wide section of Northampton – including the town centre, St Crispins and parts of St James and Semilong – required additional police involvement.
Since the team was launched, they have worked flat out on 51 investigations which have led to 102 arrests, 27 warrants being carried out and 73 PPNs (Public Protection Notices) issued.
PPNs are completed by officers when they identify vulnerable adults or children during incidents or during warrants. The forms are then assessed by the Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub (MASH) which uses the information to gauge the risk to each person and determine whether further intervention is required.
Other, impressive results the team has racked up in recent weeks includes:
- The recovery of weapons and drugs
- The arrests of suspects for allegations of sexual abuse of children
- The protection of a child at risk of significant harm - the parent was arrested for neglect
- The discovery of numerous cannabis factories
- Attended domestic incidents and safeguarding victims of domestic abuse
- Knife amnesties
- High visibility patrols in the area
- Engagement with the community
Sergeant Beth Curlett, who leads the team, said: “Drug use and drug dealing are seldom seen in isolation and are frequently linked to organised crime groups, many of whom are involved in other forms of serious crime such as firearms, modern slavery, child exploitation and immigration crime.
“Police action against drugs therefore has a much wider disruptive impact on organised criminal activity and as our results show, further more hidden crimes are identified, such as child abuse and neglect.
“As I have said before, the core to our success is community engagement and the level of trust we’ve built with local people, alongside our colleagues in the neighbourhood policing team, is fantastic. The response has been incredibly positive and I believe our communities feel safer as a result.
“Our work is far from over though and my message to drug dealers remains the same - we are on to you and we will not tolerate this criminal activity which plagues the lives of so many and especially the vulnerable people often preyed upon.
“Once again I appeal for more information from residents who may witness crimes in their area.
“Those that suspect a crime is being committed in their area are being encouraged to speak to police officers. However, if they are not comfortable with that they can call the police by dialling 101 or anonymously report the crime by calling Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.”