In September the Parish Council met with Kent Police as part of our ongoing engagement with key stakeholders on behalf of the community.
Here we outline some key points Cllrs raised and will seek to offer residents updates, going forward.
Recruitment is under way to double the size of the current number of police constables for the Community Safety Unit of Dartford, over the next 12 months as part of the phasing out of PCSOs
Kent Police urge residents to report incidents, as without the data to identify the issues or hot spots, it is difficult to quantify a true representation of the crimes or incidents that may be taking place in the area and allocate resources.
Kent Crime comparison;
Crime figures for Kent average 150,000 each year of which Dartford represents 10,000 - 15,000, and 20% of those result in a successful prosecution.
Deterrents to Crime and actions taken to deter;
Kent Police recognise that visibility of officers acts as a deterrent, and more constables will allow better visibility on the street. Also the Police will target areas where the reports are concentrated, so it is important to always report, no matter how small you may think the incident to be.
Burglary and Prosecution
Some 5% of homes are impacted by burglary and the police state that they always attend a burglary with either police officers or scene of crime officers. It was advised that burglaries were undertaken by a relatively small number of criminals who are repeat offenders and who the police are generally aware of, one such criminal when arrested admitted to 52 burglaries.
Staff turnover leads to a stop start approach to our community engagement?
Kent Police would be supportive of meeting with the Parish Council at periodic times during the year, where they can offer updates and listen to community concerns and engage. The incoming Police structure will ensure that officers are allocated to specific areas and result in better community engagement.
Kent Police are happy to offer other measures which could support the community around home safety and advice on keeping your home secure. WPC will follow up on this and return to residents.
WPC also raised recent resident feedback regarding unsafe peak time parking and HGV abuse of weight restricted roads, issues that only the Police can deal with. Kent Police are going to return to us on this matter and we will update accordingly.
How can the Parish Council support Kent Police going forward ?
WPC outlined to Kent Police we wish to remain a conduit to supportive and productive engagement and would help where feasible to do so, but also recognising that the first line of reporting should always be to the Police.