Crime crackdown a big success - police

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A MAJOR reduction in crime and anti-social behaviour has been reported by Doncaster police after a month-long operation.

The results were even better than a similar pre-Christmas crackdown the previous year, say senior officers.

There were reductions of 21 per cent in violent crime, 43 per cent in ‘serious acquisitive crime’ – robbery, theft and burglary – and 15 per cent in anti-social behaviour when compared to figures for the same period in 2009.

The operation ran from November 29 to January 3 and was targeted at five different themes which were violent crime, street and retail crime, serious acquisitive crime, road safety and anti-social behaviour.

To tackle the theme of violent crime, operations were arranged to take place throughout December, when the town centre was at its busiest.

A violent crime engagement day took place in The Hub, at Doncaster College, to engage with students on a number of issues including the problem of gun and knife crime and the dangers of excessive drinking on nights out.

The town centre had extra high-visibility patrols with officers utilising powers such as street bail and dispersal orders.

A total of 120 dispersal orders were issued which allow police to instruct anybody who is acting violently or disruptively, or who they think is likely to become violent or disruptive, to leave the area.

The powers enable police to arrest or fine people if they breach the order.

Alcohol test purchase operations were also conducted in pubs and off-licences to determine if premises were selling alcohol to anyone under the age of 18.

A total of 84 premises were tested and only four failed, with staff receiving £80 fines.

These premises will be tested again and should they continue to fail, their licence could go under review.

Inspector Jakki Hardy, of the Tutor Unit and Urban Safer Neighbourhood Teams (SNT) headed up the operation and said she was pleased with the results.

“The operation produced really good figures in 2009, but this year the reductions have been even better and overall it has been a great success in reducing violence and crime in the town centre.

“We will continue to conduct operations to tackle issues of violence, crime and antisocial behaviour and people who commit these crimes will be dealt with appropriately.”