Chief inspector is relishing role

Jo Banks, new district commander for Worthing and Adur
Jo Banks, new district commander for Worthing and Adur

Tackling a seasonal peak in burglaries and getting out and meeting as many residents as possible are among new Adur and Worthing District Commander Jo Banks’ key priorities.

As the senior officer explained, there are plenty of challenges which lie ahead, but having been working within Worthing for the past 18 months, she has already gained a strong appreciation of key issues facing the area.

Having gained more than 17 years on the force including being a PC in Crawley, joining the child protection unit in Brighton and as a detective inspector in Horsham, she has plenty of experience which will prove invaluable with her new role.

“I really enjoying working in the Worthing area, which led me to apply for this position.

My main priority as district commander is to get out there and meet people and businesses see what issues are really affecting them and encourage them to talk to us.

They have to have confidence in us as they may be potential witnesses, so we want to be as supportive as we can to people, explained the senior officer who had plenty of praise for her fellow officers in Worthing and Shoreham.

“Having a background in CID, another of my priorities will be investigation work and supporting victims of crime and anti-social behaviour and will make sure that we respond to the levels of seasonal crime that occur,” explained the inspector, who was recently involved in handling a high profile case over two Nigerian girls in Worthing who were trafficked out of the country.

She added: “This month we’ll be having specific days in Worthing Town Centre advising people to guard against purse theft, including an event we’ve just done at the Holmbush Centre in Shoreham.

I love connecting with people and also enjoy the problem solving side of our work as well, so I shall be addressing some of the long term challenges we have.

“We still have the same level of resources we did surrounding the merger of force in West Sussex, so my priority is to make the most effective use of those teams. It is important we keep our neighbourhood policing teams based in Lancing and Shoreham, who have been placed there so they can respond quickly to residents.”