New team to focus on reducing rural crime & anti-social behaviour
A new team has been set up to focus on reducing crime and anti-social behaviour in rural communities across the county.
The Essex Police Gypsy, Traveller and Rural Engagement Team (GTRET) started work earlier this year linking in with rural communities, providing extra patrols in rural areas and giving crime prevention advice.
The five officers in the team work with partner agencies to tackle issues such as unauthorised traveller encampments, hare coursing and flytipping.
They also act as a link between rural communities and local policing teams, providing them with a point of contact when issues arise.
Chief Inspector Ian Gennery, who leads the team, said: “We recognise rural communities face some unique challenges and we have committed resources specifically to support them.
“We’ve always worked with our partners and rural communities to find ways of tackling issues and the new team will build on that; improving communication and engagement with people in rural areas.
“We’ve also worked with organisations such as the Essex Rural Partnership and National Farmers Union, as well as members of our rural communities through the Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner’s Rural Crime Forum and members of the Farm and Rural Watch groups to develop the new Rural Crime Strategy.
“This will reaffirm our commitment to tackling crime in rural areas and will set out how we will work with our partners to do this.
“Rural areas, like urban areas, are affected by crimes such as burglary and domestic violence and we will treat incidents where there is a threat or risk of harm to the public as a priority no matter where they are.
“Most importantly it is vital that all crimes are reported - if we don’t know about it, we can’t respond to it.
“We need information to help us decide where to target our resources and to develop intelligence about crime trends in particular areas.”
There are also some simple steps you can take to protect your property such as marking garden machinery and making sure outbuildings are secure.
If you want to report a crime or see anything suspicious you can contact us on 101 or report it online at www.essex.police.uk/do-it-online/.
If it is an emergency or there is a crime in progress you can call 999.
Alternatively you can contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.
You can follow the Gypsy, Traveller and Rural Engagement Team on Twitter: @EP_GTRET