Operation Impact

Staffordshire Police today launched Operation Impact, the force wide approach to tackle serious acquisitive crime and bring those criminals associated to justice.

Staffordshire Police has already re-focused its efforts in tackling serious acquisitive crime, in the first half of this year (April to Sept) offences have fallen by 367, a fall of 8% with overall crime falling by nearly 10% across the force.

Six days of action will follow across Staffordshire and the City, starting on Monday 31 October through until Saturday 5 November.

I’m looking forward to some really good results as we work proactively across the County and Stoke-on-Trent to target criminals, detect and reduce crime and make our communities feel safe.

We will also be working with partners, colleagues from education, social services and road crime teams to deal with a variety of offences and issues such as anti-social behaviour and truancy to non-insured vehicles.

Whilst acquisitive crime rates are falling across Staffordshire and the City, we are not complacent, and it remains a priority for ourselves and our partners to tackle the issue by bringing offenders to justice.

During the week long operation there will be regular updates publicising the week’s activity through the force website, media and social media to allow members of the public to access updates of the action.

Five Deliberately Set Fires Reported To Police

Fire crews from Hanley were called to five separate bin fires around the Tintern Street area of Hanley in the early hours of this morning.

The fires had all been started deliberately with the first being set at 12.05am, a second just 10 minutes later and a further three at 2.05am, 3.20am and 3.40am.

Crews spent a total of 79 minutes extinguishing the five fires and the incidents have been reported to Staffordshire Police.

The bins had been put out ready for refuse collection on Tintern Street, Eagle Street, Baflour Street and Waterloo Street by the various occupiers, however it appears the offender had moved the bins back closer to the properties.

It is likely these fires were set by the same person or people as they are all in a close proximity within a short time frame and of the same nature. Setting a bin on fire is an incredibly silly thing to do ““ you have no idea what is in that bin, it could explode, it could release toxic fumes and it can easily spread to nearby property or combustible materials.

Whoever did this put themselves in danger as well as the surrounding properties, it was an incredibly selfish thing to do without a thought towards the possible outcomes of doing such a dangerous thing.

Ask The Commander

On Wednesday 27 October we are hosting Ask The Commander an on-line meeting with Chief Superintendent Bernie O’Reilly who is the Staffordshire Police Divisional Commander for Stoke-on-Trent.

The meeting, the first on-line meeting by Staffordshire Police, will allow people who are not normally able to attend Police meetings to ask questions or just attend the meeting on-line to see what happens.

This will be an interesting experience, we hold dozens of meetings with our community each week but I know people can’t always get along to meet us but still want to be involved. This is very much a trail to see if our community finds it a good way of discussing what matters to them with the police. I want to hear about the issues that matter to our communities and I want to have a discussion about how we are doing in tackling those issues and reducing crime.

The on-line meeting will be available on the front page of Pits n Pots from 6:30pm on Wednesday.

If you have questions that you would like to Ask The Commander you can of course ask them on the night during the meeting, or if you are not able to view the meeting on Wednesday leave them in the comments on this article or mail them directly to stoke.police@me.com and they will be asked on your behalf in the meeting.

The meeting will be archived and available to review at any time by visiting our PnP Live! page.

If you use twitter, you can also ask questions or make comments after 6:30pm on Wednesday by using the tag #askthecommander

As well as Chief Superintendent Bernie O’Reilly there will be a member of the Crown Prosecution Services at the meeting who will be on hand to answer questions.

Staffordshire Police To Hold First On-line Meeting

Police in Stoke-on-Trent will be holding a police and community meeting with a difference next week. On Wednesday 27 October between 7.00 pm and 8.00 pm Chief Superintendent Bernie O’Reilly will be on line to chat to local internet users about crime and community safety in Stoke-on-Trent.

Pits n Pots have partnered with Staffordshire Police to help host and run the on-line meeting next week.

We are working closely with our existing on-line community who have the expertise to hold this sort of meeting. We hope that it’s successful and lots of people get involved. We have seen in recent months more and more of our communities using the internet and social media sites Twitter and Facebook on a daily basis to talk about local issues, and over 500 people now follow @policingstoke on twitter.

We work closely with a number of the “Ëœhyperlocal’ web sites to tackle community issues and we hope users of these sites get involved.

This will be an interesting experience, we hold dozens of meetings with our community each week but I know people can’t always get along to meet us but still want to be involved. This is very much a trail to see if our community finds it a good way of discussing what matters to them with the police.

I want to hear about the issues that matter to our communities and I want to have a discussion about how we are doing in tackling those issues and reducing crime.

We are extremely pleased to be working with Staffordshire Police on this project. In the current climate of Government cuts, all organisations need to look at different ways of working, involving, engaging and communicating with their users. Staffordshire Police and especially the Stoke-on-Trent Division are very much at the forefront when it comes to using tools such as FaceBook and Twitter as further ways of communicating with residents.

Using the available social media tools and our experience in this field, we hope we will allow people who may not normally be able to attend Police meetings due to work or time commitments to be able to interact and get involved.

Anyone wanting to get involved either to ask questions or just to view should just come back to http://www.pitsnpots.co.uk from 6.30 pm on Wednesday 27 October to join the live event. The event will be displayed on the front page.

If you are not able to get to a computer to get online but use twitter on your phone, you can ask questions or comment by using tag #askthecommander and we will do our best include them during the meeting.

You are invited to e-mail questions in before the online meeting to stoke.police@me.com the questions sent to this address will then be addressed during the meeting.

An archive of the meeting will be available shortly after the event so it can be viewed online on demand.

Operation Nemesis Three Years On

The award-winning Operation Nemesis the police operation to crackdown on drug dealers in Staffordshire is celebrating its third anniversary.

Operation Nemesis was launched in Stoke-on-Trent on 13 September 2007 following an undercover police operation which had lasted over a year in the city. Around 400 police officers attended the city’s Kings Hall at 5am that day to be briefed on the first of three major arrest operations over a three-month period.

Since its launch Operation Nemesis has netted hundreds of suspected drug dealers who have been arrested and taken off the streets of Staffordshire. Many of these offenders have subsequently been charged and sent to prison for drugs offences.

Since that day Operation Nemesis became part of daily business for Staffordshire Police and, following the success of the campaign in Stoke-on-Trent, it has subsequently been rolled out across the county.

£2.7m has been recovered through asset recovery linked to the Operation Nemesis campaign in the past 3 years.

Operation Nemesis remains Staffordshire Police’s commitment to tackling major drug dealers and bringing them to justice.

Drug misuse will not be tolerated in Staffordshire and we will act on all information received regarding suspected drug dealing in the communities we serve.

We are determined to carry on working with our partner agencies to rid communities of drug dealing and the negative effect it has on neighbourhoods and families.

We continue to work closely with our colleagues in local authorities and those who work for Staffordshire’s drug support and treatment services. We place a huge emphasis on helping addicts kick their habit. We also offer a great deal of support to their family and friends to help them achieve this.

I must take this opportunity to thank members of the public for their continued help and support with Operation Nemesis. The campaign’s ongoing success is testament to the confidence people have in providing us with information about suspected drugs activity in their community. The help we receive from the public is vital and I would encourage people to continue to let us know their concerns.

Residents tell us they want robust action taken against dealers, and the criminal activity and anti-social behaviour they attract, and we will continue to take positive action.

Operation Nemesis carries a simple message to drug offenders: we are not going away and we will bring you to justice.

The number of people who have been arrested in connection with drugs offences (which includes supply of, possession, possession with intent to supply, production and trafficking) since the launch of Operation Nemesis:

  • Sep 07 ““ March 08 ““ 1,100
  • April 08 ““ March 09 -1, 483
  • April 09 ““ March 10 ““ 1, 619

2,705 drug offences (Class A and Class B) have been recorded by Staffordshire Police since the launch of Operation Nemesis in September 2007:

  • Sep 07 ““ March 08 ““ 1,054
  • April 08 ““ March 09 ““ 870
  • April 09 ““ March 10 ““ 781

32 Year Old Man Arrested In Longport

Staffordshire Police arrested a 32 year old male in Longport this afternoon.

The male was wanted in relation to a serious incident in Merseyside.

Officers were made aware of a vehicle travelling on the M6 South at around 1.15 pm which it suspected to be carrying a suspect. The vehicle was spotted within minutes by a neighbourhood officer on patrol who relayed the information to the area control room at Hanley.

Officers armed with tasers supported by dog support were put in place to intercept the vehicle as it travelled along the A500 towards Burslem. At 1.30 pm officers stopped the vehicle, which was a taxi from the Merseyside area, near the BP petrol station on Porthill Road.

Inspector Paul Barker from the area control room said, ‘The suspect was seen in possession of a bladed weapon and was threatening the taxi driver. Officers used their taser weapon to subdue the suspect and disarm him. He was arrested taken to the Northern Area Custody Facility at Etruria. Paramedics attended to assist the driver who was not injured.’

He continued, ‘The suspect did not sustain any significant injury as a result of the of the officers actions. Our objective throughout this operation was the safety of the public, the driver and our officers, we were able to quickly deal with the situation and arrest the suspect.”

CCTV Operators from Stoke-on-Trent City Council also helped monitor the vehicles progress along the A500. The forces helicopter Air One was also able to help the control room team coordinate our response.’

Staffordshire Police are working closely with colleagues in Merseyside in relation to this investigation.

Copper Thefts Putting Lives At Risk

Burglars are risking the lives of themselves and innocent members of the public by committing crime.

The warning has been issued by police in Stoke-on-Trent following an incident at an address in Scotia Road just after 8.30pm on Monday.

Officers from both Staffordshire Police and Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service were called to the address to find that offenders had stolen and/or damaged copper piping within the property. This piping was carrying the gas supply. Fortunately the incident was made safe and the gas switched off and no further damage or injury was caused.

The immediate gas supply was quickly shut off and the property ventilated. No one was in the house at the time and neighbouring properties did not need to be evacuated.

Chief Inspector Peter Hall, from Stoke-on-Trent division said, ‘An investigation into this incident is now underway and my officers want to hear from anyone who saw suspicious persons and/or activity in Scotia Road last night. Fortunately the swift actions of the emergency services, together with gas experts, were able to avert any potential explosion. I believe that this was a foolish and inexperienced thief, not someone trying to cause extensive damage or injury by causing a gas leak. Unfortunately crimes of this type cause thousands of pounds of damage and provide the thief with little more than petty cash from the value of the scrap stolen. Cutting into any piping where mains services are connected is very dangerous and could lead to serious injury or loss of life. I would urge local people to be vigilant and report suspicious activity to us, particularly where properties are known to be vacant. Staffordshire Police will continue to work hard to bring offenders to justice.’

Ian Sloss, Risk Reduction Manager for Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service said ‘People who carry out this type of crime expose themselves and others to possible serious injury, or even worse. The ignition of gas which has been released, accidentally or otherwise, can cause fires which result in explosion. This endangers the life of the perpetrator, the general public and emergency services staff called to attend an incident.’

If anyone has any information on this incident they are urged to contact Staffordshire Police on: 0300 123 4455 quoting Crime reference number: 0802 of 11/01/10