Extra police patrols in Sheffield during festive period

Police unveil plans for policing Sheffield city over Christmas. Superintendant Colin McFarlane with some of his team.
Police unveil plans for policing Sheffield city over Christmas. Superintendant Colin McFarlane with some of his team.
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Police will be out in force in Sheffield city centre as revellers flock to bars, clubs and restaurants over the festive period.

Extra officers will be on duty patrolling the city centre on foot, in cars and vans and on horseback.

Police unveil plans for policing Sheffield city over Christmas. Superintendant Colin McFarlane with some of his team.

Police unveil plans for policing Sheffield city over Christmas. Superintendant Colin McFarlane with some of his team.

Undercover police will also be visiting venues looking to catch criminals in the act and handing out crime prevention advice to those on nights out – to prevent them being targeted by thieves.

They will also be ready to step in if violence flares.

Plain clothes officers, as well as some in uniform, will also be travelling on trams and buses around the city ready to respond to incidents.

Chief Inspector Jayne Forrest, in charge of policing the city centre, said ‘keeping people safe’ is the priority’.

Police unveil plans for policing Sheffield city over Christmas.

Police unveil plans for policing Sheffield city over Christmas.

She said: “The idea is not to stop people having fun but to make sure it is done safety.

“We have a plan in place for every weekend of the year for the night time economy, but over Christmas and New Year we bring in additional resources, especially for the traditionally busy days such as Boxing Day.

“We want to see the city busy at this time of year, but we want people to be safe.”

She said the policing plan was based on ‘hotspot management’, where incidents at venues and particular locations are analysed week after week to identify places where trouble is most likely to break-out.

She said that during the day, officers will be patrolling the streets looking for offenders trying to take advantage of Christmas shoppers by stealing their purses or bags.

Officers will also be setting up ‘trap cars’ where valuables will be left on display, in a bid to catch thieves prowling the streets looking for Christmas presents to steal.

She said: “The trap cars are a successful tool in detecting offenders.

“Last Christmas, one of the trap cars we used was broken into within 35 minutes of it being parked.

“We will be using them again, because at this time of year with more people visiting the city centre we traditionally get a spike in offences, with opportunist thieves taking advantage.”

She said officers will also be using Dispersal Order powers in the city centre to remove people at risk of becoming embroiled in trouble.

The senior officer said: “We will not shy away from using Dispersal Order powers for the safety of those we move on and for the safety of others.

“I am a firm believer that somebody who is drunk at 10pm is likely to become a problem at 2am, so removing them from the area a safer all round.

“Anyone who returns after being asked to leave will be arrested and faces prosecution.