By Matt Jarram, Local Democracy Reporter
A major plan on how to tackle crime across Nottinghamshire has been published – which includes creating ‘a ring of steel’ around the county through a bigger network of cameras which automatically track car number plates.
Nottinghamshire Police and Crime Commissioner Caroline Henry (Con) has launched her first Police and Crime Plan – which determines how money will be spent on policing up to 2025.
Called ‘Make Notts Safe’ the plan explains which areas of crime will be targeted and how Mrs Henry will measure performance.
Its key aims include reducing the level of violent knife crime across the county by 10 per cent, as well as cutting the number of first-time entrants into the youth justice system by the same amount.
Mrs Henry also wants to increase the proportion of rape offences which result in a charge or summons, and invest in more technology to fight crime.
She said: “It is my vision that by the end of my term in office there will be fewer victims, greater trust and confidence in the police and criminal justice system and a stronger and more resilient network of services supporting victims to recover from harm.
“I am committed to prioritising the issues that we know are causing the greatest harm and concern to our communities – including serious violence, domestic and sexual abuse, substance abuse and neighbourhood priorities such as anti-social behaviour, speeding and rural crime.”
As crime commissioner, Mrs Henry sets the budget for Notts Police and lays out its local priorities. Day-to-day operational control lies with the Chief Constable, Craig Guildford.
Notts Police will receive around £245m this year, which includes an increase in the annual council tax police precept to £9.99 for a Band D property.
Other key aims from Mrs Henry’s plan include:
- Increase safety and feelings of safety across Nottinghamshire – particularly among women and girls.
- Make £800,000 available for crime prevention initiatives to increase neighbourhood safety and hotspot locations across Nottinghamshire.
- Invest £400,000 into the city’s night-time economy, such as ‘Operation Guardian’ which cracks down on drug dealers.
- Invest over £1.5m in custody-based diversion for young people and further enhance the suite of out of court disposal options available to tackle the underlying causes of early onset offending.
- Work with local authority partners to ensure all primary schools in Nottinghamshire are offered specialist healthy relationship programmes which include issues such as consent, coercive and controlling behaviour.
- Invest over £2.6m into local drug treatment services for offenders across Nottinghamshire, and increase referrals into drug treatment services through ‘test on arrest’.
- Make at least £300,000 of new funding available to improve the police’s response to crimes committed or facilitated online.
- Expand the force’s digital media investigation team to enable better outcomes for victims of online crime.
- Establish an Anti-social Behaviour Taskforce that will work to increase public confidence in the response to ASB.
- Develop Operation Reacher – which disrupts and dismantles drug dealers by increasing the number of officers and level of resources available.
- Improve the recording and reporting on specific rural crimes, such as farm machinery theft, fuel theft, fly tipping, poaching, livestock offences and equine crime.
- Make an additional £400,000 available to tackle rural crime such as equipment like drones, hardware tracking and off-road stingers.
- Provide £500,000 additional funding to expand the use of Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) technology, creating a ‘ring of steel’ around Nottinghamshire that will help to stop criminal use of the road network and improve the response to county lines drugs trafficking.
- Work with partner agencies to improve the speed of investigations. This includes driving improvements in outcomes for rape and other serious sexual offences.
- Launch a £1m Make Notts Safe Grants Fund for third sector organisations to take action to address the community safety issues they face.
- Continue to lobby Government to ensure full implementation of the long awaited police funding formula review which currently sees the area lose over £10m per year.
Chief Constable of Nottinghamshire Police, Craig Guildford, said: “We will unapologetically seek the relentless disruption of serious and organised crime. We will continue to support and refer victims whilst safeguarding the vulnerable.
“The nature and complexity of the crimes that we deal with continues to change, which is why we have invested in more specialist posts to tackle online and serious organised crime.
“We must balance addressing the visible impact of crime such as anti-social behaviour and burglary with tackling the often hidden impact of organised crime or crimes committed behind closed doors, such as domestic and sexual abuse, which can lead to great harm and vulnerability.”