Keep Christmas safe campaign launched

Contributed by editor on Dec 13, 2005 - 09:11 PM


Kent Police have launched a major new blitz on crime in the run-up to Christmas and into the New Year.

In a drive to ensure Kent remains one of the safest counties in the country, officers will be targeting burglary, vehicle crime, criminal damage and anti-social behaviour - including drink-related nuisance and violence.

The campaign is being launched in the run-up to Christmas, because for criminals the season of giving is the perfect time for taking, with high-value, portable goods more widely available, more desirable and often easier to steal.

The new push, under the force's Operation Excalibur banner, will focus on known criminals and troublemakers, using local information and intelligence to identify crime patterns and the people responsible for them.

Teams will target any developing "hot spots" with the aim of bringing the criminals to justice.

At the same time, officers will offer advice to residents on what they can do to keep themselves, their homes and their properties safe.

The message to seasonal shoppers, out and about, in their cars and in their homes, is: "To keep it safe, keep it out of sight."

The campaign will also tackle seasonal problems linked to drink, which include increased night-time nuisance, the dangers caused by people driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, and increased violence, from punch-ups outside pubs to violence behind closed doors.

The festive season can also be a time of suffering for domestic violence victims, as alcohol also fuels rage. Specialist teams will be working with other agencies to identify and support victims – and to deal with the person causing the violence.

Their Christmas message is: "You don't have to suffer. Tell us it's happening and we can help."

Chief Constable Mike Fuller said: "At Kent Police we are committed to ensuring Kent stays a safe county and this campaign demonstrates our absolute determination to drive down crime.

"Even though figures in the county remain low, every crime is one too many. We want people to be confident in our ability to deal with the things that worry them, as we know that even fear of crime can be distressing for those in our community who feel more vulnerable.

"Our message to criminals is: 'Don't even think of making Christmas a misery for others, as we will be following up calls and information – and we will be looking for you.'

"Our message to the law-abiding majority of people in the county is: 'We are out there and we are determined to ensure you enjoy a safe holiday. If you see anything suspicious, call us – and if you have any information at all, contact us or ring Crimestoppers on 0800 555111'."