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Inspector Neil Bellamy's Blog: June 2020

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As the lockdown continues to ease we have seen an increase in demand as an organisation to the pre Covid levels, and as a result we are now as busy as we ever were. The last three months have been truly unprecedented for Policing, and in some respects surreal, because for my officers and staff little changed and involved continuing to come to work whereas the wider community, if not involved as a key worker, have led very restricted lives.

That is not to say that criminals did not continue to commit crime, and domestic violence offenders did not assault their partners, but the numbers of incidents and crimes reported were significantly reduced.

As I mentioned in my last update the incidence of off-road nuisance did not go away during Covid either, and if anything it actually increased. I have deployed my team on the Police Quad as well as the off-road team, but I appreciate that many of our residents who live in rural communities have continued to be blighted by this. My sergeants will be planning operations as we continue into the summer months and we hope to alleviate some of the impact of this where we can.

I have also been working closely with the Local Authority and Community Safety Team providing support to the volunteers and workers in our town centres as they continue to open up, and often providing assistance to those providing advice and guidance with regard to the health regulations.

You will see that my teams across Bassetlaw have continued to be busy whether that is making sure violent offenders are remanded into custody or those that ply their trade in drugs or grow it themselves are dealt with appropriately.

Our communities continue to ask us to tackle speeding and bad driving as well as uninsured motor vehicles, and we will continue to focus on this as well as the many other priorities and requests made of the neighbourhood Teams by our communities.

And finally I would reference the comments made by Sergeant Holmes in the South Update below regarding Dave Marsden, one of my PCSO’s, who has recently left the team in order to join the organisation as a Constable. Dave is the last in a long line of PCSO’s and Special Constables who have cut their teeth on Bassetlaw at Worksop, Retford and Harworth and who have gone on to be successful regular constables in our force or contiguous ones. I wish him luck.

So some updates from Bassetlaw:

From The North Team – Sergeant Simon Whitehouse

In response to recent incidents involving criminal damage to property and vehicles as well as threats of violence, Officers have been busy investigating and proactively patrolling the affected areas.  Several arrests have been made and we plan to maintain efforts to prevent further incidents.

We are seeing a rise locally in the recreational use of the psychoactive substance Nitrous Oxide also known as laughing gas.  Small silver gas canisters are being found in local beauty spots and car parks.  Abuse of this substance can be harmful and therefore we would encourage people to report any sightings of persons using the gas in order that we can approach and educate them.  Unlicensed supply of the gas is illegal and we would be interested to learn of anyone concerned in the supply.  

We have made the arrest and remanded a male for a Public Order offence in the Godfrey’s Pond area where during the arrest he became violent and assaulted an Officer by spitting in his face.  He has since been charged and remanded for offences of Pubic Order and Assaulting an Emergency Services worker. 

We have made the arrest of another male during an early morning operation involving Neighbourhood Officers and our Response colleagues.  He was arrested for offences committed in March where he drove dangerously, during which he rammed a Police vehicle.  He has been charged and remanded and awaits sentencing. 

Officers have re-commenced Speeding Operations on Worksop North, recently focusing efforts in Carlton-in-Lindrick.  This type of Operation is in high demand and we will hopefully get out regularly tackling our FATAL 4 priorities. 

From The South Team – Sergeant Rob Holmes

Worksop South Neighbourhood Team has really been active this month targeting persistent offenders whilst still maintaining public contact.

On the 1st of the month local nominal Gavin Spooner was arrested for breaching his court bail and on the 3rd June he was arrested again for another breach. We’ll continue targeting breaches until custodial sentences are issued.

On the 22nd June nominal Ritchie Frost was arrested for 11 shop thefts and 3 breaches of his Community Behaviour Order. He was found guilty at court and given a 20 week suspended sentence for 12 months. We will ensure any future offending will mean he goes to prison.

Also this month we began to tackle the issue of Nitrous Oxide use in the Manton area and the effects it has particularly on drivers and the consequential littering of the containers.

In conjunction with the local council we have monitored the area via CCTV and increased patrols in the area and on the 3rd June PC Ryan the beat manager for Manton arrested local youths Mitchell Brown, Jason Peacock, and Connor Edwards’ on Radford Street Manton for possession with intent to supply Nitrous Oxide.

We have since seen a huge reduction in use in the area and the tell-tale canisters have been cleared up. Several vehicles on the area have also been stopped and seized with the drivers reported.

On the 9th June we commenced our open surgery at Morrison’s making contact with police easier   whilst maintaining social distancing. With the cooperation of the store we listened to resident’s concerns and offered informed advice. The surgery will be a regular event on the 2nd Tues of every month between 10.00-12.00hrs

And finally we have to say goodbye to a member of our team who’s moving to pastures new. Police Community Support Officer of 8 years Dave Marsden is leaving to Join Nottinghamshire Police as a Constable.  Dave’s work in the Town centre for 2 years has built up an excellent rapport with shop keepers and residents.  Good Luck Dave you’ll be sadly missed.

From The East Bassetlaw Team – Sergeant Sam Pearson

It would appear that it is the weather for growing cannabis in the Harworth area.

We have issued advice to the local residents who insist on cultivating their indoor gardens and that is don’t waste your time and money as we will simply seize the lot!

Two addresses in Bircotes and one in Harworth had visits in the last week alone with three persons being questioned regarding the cannabis and the enquiries are on-going.

We have spent a lot of time looking at grows in the area and we are on the hunt for more.

The hot weather has resulted in calls from the public regarding anti-social behaviour, especially in light of the Covid restrictions.  Key areas for us have been people gathering at spots alongside the River idle.

Whilst it may be tempting to go for a swim, we have received many calls regarding persons putting themselves at risk diving into the water, litter being left by those enjoying the sun and blatant breach of social gathering. 

We will continue to patrol those key areas, especially during the hot weather.

My officers have continued to proactively police the illegal use of vehicles on our local roads.

As a result we have seized several vehicles that have been driven by disqualified drivers and vehicles that were being used in crime.

In particular we have focused on those vehicle causing issues around Retford Town Centre which we know frustrate the local residents.

One of our local drug users was very disappointed to find that we discovered his Mamba supply.  This is a drug we know is being used in our area and we want to do everything we can to eradicate this use.

Several individuals on licence have also been arrested.  They had continued to flaunt the law and had no intentions of keeping to their licence conditions.  As such they are now back within the prison system.

A male who recently came back to Retford has been arrested for three assaults.  We will continue to monitor this male who remains under investigation.

My officers have been very busy behind the scenes in compiling criminal behaviour orders so we can impose greater restrictions on those individuals who continue to cause the Town issues.  We are also working in conjunction with the council to evict those individuals who are continually making life for some of our local residents very difficult.

In all a busy month, however we are hoping that the opening of pubs on July 4th will see the public having a great time but behave responsibly.

Drugs and drug-related activity

Advice on what to do if you have been affected by drug abuse or you wish to report drug-related activity in your area.

I have found some drugs – what should I do?

If you have found prescription or illegal drugs, please call Nottinghamshire Police on our 101 non-emergency number to arrange for an officer to collect them as soon as possible.

Alternatively, you can also hand these in at your nearest police station.