On the beat Wetherby: Crime knows no borders

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This is the first of a regular monthly overview of crime in the Wetherby district, written by Sergeant Stephen Atkinson.

I should say firstly whereas crime knows no borders we do in this area share a border with our North Yorkshire police colleagues.

We are currently working towards greater collaboration with North Yorkshire police and seeking to forge links to enable us to tackle the issues which often straddle the border.

Our experiences show that our communities are suffering at the hands of the same criminal elements whether it be here in Wetherby out towards Knaresborough, Boston Spa down to Tadcaster or the Harewood district towards Harrogate.

The links we are currently building will see a more cohesive approach in planned future cross border operations.

It may well see criminals and persons of interest visited jointly by both North and West Yorkshire officers.

Wetherby police station is operational 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

We cover the town of Wetherby and also Boston Spa. We police the villages out towards the Leeds Ring Road as far as Shadwell and across the A64 corridor to Barwick, Scholes and Aberford.

We also police the villages of Harewood, Clifford, Bramham, Walton. Thorp Arch, Collingham, Linton, Scarcroft, Thorner and the smaller communities in between.

This is a massive area in terms of the square mileage.

The area is serviced by several Police Constables and Community Support Officers who provide the visibility in the community as well as dealing with local issues. All the officers are also ably supported by special constables.

A brief review of the area as a whole crime wise in the last month shows on average around two crimes a day reported, 62 in January in fact.

Obviously some of the offences are more high profile than others.

Of the 62 there have been 13 reported burglaries of residencies.

There have been 10 of what we refer to as burglary other which are generally sheds, garages or outbuildings.

There have been 13 offences relating to the theft of or from motor vehicles.

The most high profile crime of the month was without doubt the robbery at a private dwelling in Collingham.

Whereas the occupants endured a terrifying ordeal, it must be stressed that crimes such as this are extremely rare.

A dedicated team of officers continue to investigate this offence with the local officers from Wetherby continuing to patrol and offer reassurance to the community.

Finally please help yourself not to be a victim of crime.

In recent weeks and months we have had numerous offences of theft from motor vehicle whereby criminals have been wandering around in the dead of night simply trying cars doors.

You would be amazed just how many cars are left insecure overnight.

You would not retire for the evening without locking the doors of your house so please ensure your car is locked also.

We rely on the community to be our eyes and ears and encourage residents to report any suspicious activity.

Please make use of the 999 and 101 facility and I would encourage readers to familiarise themselves with the West and North Yorkshire police websites from which you can find out information in your area.

You can also follow us on Facebook. The search for matters relating to Wetherby and the villages can be located by searching for West Yorkshire Police - Outer North East.

Sgt Stephen Atkinson

Wetherby Ward Manager