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Faster police response times urged

PUBLISHED: 20:00 25 June 2002 | UPDATED: 12:10 03 March 2010

A SUFFOLK councillor whose house was broken in to for the second time in four years is calling for speedier police response times.

Joanna Spicer's calls have high-lighted the fact there is no on-duty police to cover the rural Bury area, including Ixworth and Stanton, from 3am to 6am.

A SUFFOLK councillor whose house was broken in to for the second time in four years is calling for speedier police response times.

Joanna Spicer's calls have high-lighted the fact there is no on-duty police to cover the rural Bury area, including Ixworth and Stanton, from 3am to 6am.

Mrs Spicer, who lives in Euston, close to Thetford in the north of the county was woken by a burglar in the early hours last week .

Alarms at the conservative councillor for Blackbourn's detached property caused the intruder to flee on a motorbike.

Even though the police, who attended from Bury and Brandon, failed to meet the nationwide response time of 19 minutes, it is urban response times Mrs Spicer believes need to be improved.

She said: "I accept that in rural areas a response time of 19 minutes is unrealistic. Taking into account where I live and that the call wasn't life-threatening I am making no complaint."

Rather she wants police reponse rates in urban areas, currently also 19 minutes, to be tightened.

She said: "In an urban area a response rate of 19 minutes is complacent. I believe they should be more like the eight minute response time of ambulances."

Speaking at the Suffolk Police Authority meeting Chief Constable Paul Scott Lee stressed all areas of the county were covered round the clock.

He said: "It is a matter of balancing resources. Should the time ever come that we decide on tighter response times we can only do that at a price.

"If you police on the "just in case" principle, the price you pay is that you have less visible officers. At the moment I feel we have the balance about right."

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