Increase in Wellingborough neighbourhood officers helps tackle local criminality
Main article content
Proactive policing work by neighbourhood teams is helping to fight crime and protect people in Wellingborough and East Northamptonshire.
Neighbourhood officers reported a significant increase in enforcement during February leading to a number of arrests and the recovery of drugs and a number of lethal weapons.
Only last month Chief Constable Nick Adderley announced plans to double the number of neighbourhood police officers focusing on local policing in an attempt to provide even more visibility within communities across Northamptonshire.
The increase will see the number of dedicated neighbourhood constables across rural and urban parts of the county rise from 50 to 100 over the next 18 months, with the ambition for a further 60 by 2023.
During February, neighbourhood officers were actively involved in a number of arrests relating to knife crime, child sexual abuse and drug trafficking.
In one instance, neighbourhood officers who were following up intelligence around drug dealing arrested a youth in Wellingborough who was in possession of a 16in machete. A bag which he had attempted to dump was also found to contain around £7,500 of Class A drugs.
In a separate warrant, neighbourhood teams arrested a man in Wellingborough following the seizure of about £15,000 of cannabis and a large amount of jewellery.
Elsewhere, officers who stopped a 15-year-old boy on Wellingborough’s Hemmingwell estate due to a Covid-19 breach discovered he was actually a looked after child attached to social services in another Force area. He was subsequently safeguarded.
One man and two teenage boys were also arrested in Wellingborough following a knife crime incident during which a police officer was forced to use a Taser. A subsequent search of an address linked to the offenders raised concerns around child sexual exploitation and, as a result, safeguarding referrals have been submitted to the Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub (MASH).
In addition, neighbourhood officers also arrested a man on suspicion of having sexual activity with a child who was subsequently safeguarded.
Neighbourhood Sergeant Scott Desrochers said: “The recent increase in our officer strength has allowed us to be more proactive and productive and the further uplift will only further enhance our capabilities. Community intelligence is key to our teams’ success and I urge everyone to report any concerns they have to contact us on 101.”
Neighbourhood Inspector Nathan Murray said: “Since taking over as the Sector Commander for Wellingborough and East Northants, I’ve been really pleased to see the results my team, in partnership with other agencies, are having within the community.
“Over the past four weeks we have had great success in apprehending offenders involved in knife crime and drugs, something that can have a devastating effect on the community and victims of crime. My commitment to you, is that my team will continue to target those people in the community who think it’s acceptable to commit crime, and we will be working in close partnership with others to bring these offenders to justice.
“Supported by PCSOs and our Special Constable colleagues we have also been safeguarding the vulnerable and those potentially exploited by others - we have to support those vulnerable individuals and navigate them away from any further exploitation or involvement in crime.”