TIM DREW: ‘Super cocooning’ helps to fight burglaries

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LAST month saw the launch of an initiative designed to test and strengthen the operational resilience of Sussex Police.

It involved officers usually involved in back-office activities supporting their front-line colleagues by carrying out a variety of roles, including executing search warrants, investigating burglaries and supporting road-safety campaigns.

In this way, multi-skilling has been promoted, with officers having been afforded the opportunity to refresh their skills and gain experience of working in other areas of policing.

This initiative will play an important part in building public confidence, maximising face-to-face contact between the public, the police, and community volunteers, and in catching criminals and keeping people safe.

For example, and as part of its ongoing commitment to tackle burglary across the county, police officers – assisted by Neighbourhood Watch volunteers – will be visiting residents living near burglary victims to provide information and advice to help prevent them becoming a target.

This tactic, called ‘super cocooning’, has been trialled in Hove and a dramatic reduction – 51 per cent – in burglaries followed, compared with the same period the previous year.

• The Tarring Community Forum will meet between 7pm and 8pm on Tuesday, September 9, at West Worthing Baptist Church, in South Street, Tarring, followed by two surgeries on Wednesday, September 10 – outside Gala Bingo in Rowlands Road, Worthing, where PCSO Sally Haggis will be available between 11am and 11.30am, and at The Clubhouse, in Palatine Road, Worthing, with PCSO Ros Tite, from 5.30pm to 6.30pm. Thereafter, four surgeries will take place on Thursday, September 11, hosted respectively by PCSO Elaine Tullett at the Worthing Leisure Centre, in Shaftesbury Avenue, and by PCSO Gary Morgan at the Sanctuary Housing Office, in Samphire Drive, both from 10am to 11am; by PCSO Shauna Bowen, from 11.30am to 12.30pm at Findon Valley Library, Lime Tree Avenue, and by PCSO Catherine Dines, from noon to 1pm, at Buddys Café, in South Farm Road, Worthing.