Calls made for return of patrolling officers to combat rising crime in Pinewood

Suffolk Police and Crime Commissioner Tim Passmore.

Suffolk Police and Crime Commissioner Tim Passmore. - Credit: Archant

A letter is to be sent to Suffolk’s police and crime commissioner in a bid to bring back more patrolling officers.

Pinewood Parish Council has already written to the Chief Constable of Suffolk Constabulary with concerns of rising crime figures in the area.

Last month, more than half (34) of the 66 crimes that were reported in Babergh East, which includes 12 wards comprising of 38 parishes, were in Pinewood.

Chairman of the parish council, Robert Manning, said: “Up until two or three years ago we used to have six to 10 recorded crimes within the month in the parish.

“It’s been increasing over the course of two years and we don’t think that a parish of our size should have that amount of crime.”

Mr Manning added he “rarely” saw an officer walking the streets and there had not been a police presence at the council’s monthly meetings for at least three months.

Around two months ago, the councillors wrote a letter to the then acting Chief Constable Gareth Wilson raising their concerns.

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Unsatisfied with his response, a letter is now being drafted to Suffolk Police and Crime Commissioner Tim Passmore.

“We will be saying we are not happy with the amount of policing we are getting and see if he can intervene and change the policy,” Mr Manning added.

A spokeswoman for Suffolk police said a review of local policing was underway and reducing vehicle crime had been made a priority for the Babergh East Safer Neighbourhood Team following a rise in thefts from vehicles.

The spokeswoman added: “Because of the number of parishes that SNT officers cover, attending all meetings can take a considerable amount of shift time. Where possible, we want our officers to be out in local communities and have to ensure that we are prioritising their work and making the best use of their time.

“If there is a specific local issue of concern that is being discussed at a planned meeting or a police presence is required following a major incident then we will send a representative and we will continue to maintain liaison with parish councils.”

Mr Passmore said it was his role to hold the Chief Constable to account on behalf of the public and he would be happy to do what he could to rectify any concerns about policing in Pinewood.

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