On Wednesday August 18, NFRN representatives met with newly elected Police and Crime Commissioner Steve Turner to discuss the appropriate measures needed to tackle retail crime in the district.
The Commissioner advised the NFRN that he would take alternative strategies to raise the importance of retail crime, stating he understood the importance of independent retailers within local communities. Cleveland Police have recently recruited 185 new officers from their target of 240, and this is on track to be reached 2 years ahead of schedule.
Mr Turner stressed the importance of reporting and understood how minimal reporting often stems from a lack of confidence in local forces. The Commissioner is currently working to develop an app which allows users to upload statements and CCTV images, allowing retailers to report crimes instantly. This can help build up network of intelligence, to identify repeat offenders and enables the force to locate areas which require additional resources.
The Commissioner recommends that NFRN members identify their local Police Community Support Officers (PCSOs) and communicate regularly. PCSOs feed information directly to the force and can be a great benefit to local communities.