TIM DREW: Important to report suspicions to police
The importance of reporting suspicion of criminal activity and the affirmation of police commitment to public engagement were highlighted by Inspector Allan Lowe of the Neighbourhood Policing Team at the 25th Annual General Meeting of the Worthing Neighbourhood Watch Association, held in conjunction with Adur Neighbourhood Watch Association.
Receipt of information was what enabled the police to decide where to prioritise resources, and suspicions should always be made known, with the decision on what to do being left to the police. This was particularly important in the case of vulnerable people, Inspector Lowe citing the practice of “cuckooing” where drug dealers take over the homes of vulnerable people in exchange for free drugs, the home then being used as a base for drug dealing.
On being advised that cannabis dealing was commonplace, Inspector Lowe asked that police be given the details so this could be made the subject of targeted activity. He added that the law on cannabis dealing had not changed.
The police can be contacted online, by email at [email protected] or by calling 101 for non-emergencies.
Some ten street briefings had taken place where the police made themselves available to discuss local issues and these are advertised on the Sussex Police website – with the most recent one being in Broadwater on Saturday, October 21 – so it was not the case that the police did not seek to engage with the public.
Inspector Lowe also pointed out that, although the days of police being on the beat had passed, surveillance had not relaxed. The internet is under continuous police review and, as a result, a number of paedophiles have been arrested; in addition, an armed drug dealer was recently arrested at Copthorne following information thus sourced.
The Central Ward Neighbourhood Panel Meeting originally scheduled for this evening will now take place on Thursday, November 16, at the Ardington Hotel, Steyne Gardens at 6pm.