ESSEX Police new Town Centre Teams in the west of the county will be continuing to keep our towns welcoming places as they prepare for one of the busiest times of year in the run up to Christmas.
The seven teams in the Harlow, Epping Forest and Thurrock districts were launched in July and August as part of the force’s ongoing commitment to investing in visible, frontline officers.
Collectively they have made more than 60 arrests and carried out more than 130 investigations.
Here’s a snapshot of some of the work they’ve been doing over the last few months:
Officers in Harlow have been working closely with businesses to tackle issues such as shoplifting and anti-social behaviour.
This has resulted in less anti-social behaviour associated with people drinking alcohol on the streets and work is ongoing to tackle this issue and provide support to vulnerable people.
The team have also been carrying out patrols to deal with and deter incidents such as assaults and drug dealing.
In Grays, officers have been working closely with Thurrock Council’s civil enforcement team to tackle anti-social behaviour in the town centre, including joint patrols to enforce the public spaces protection order.
Their work has resulted in 33 community protection notices being handed to individuals whose behaviour is having a detrimental effect on the community’s quality of life.
They are also working with the council, Thurrock Community Safety Partnership and other partners to tackle the causes of anti-social behaviour and help prevent reoffending.
South Ockendon’s Town Centre Team regularly attend the South Ockendon Community Hub to speak to volunteers and members of the public about any concerns they have, offer advice and reassurance, and to help tackle any concerns they have about anti-social behaviour.
The Stanford-le-Hope Town Centre Team are investigating reports of car thefts and anti-social behaviour.
Brentwood Town Centre Team work closely with the community policing team to carry out patrols and look for hidden weapons. This is part of Operation Sceptre, our ongoing work to tackle violent crime and knife crime.
They also regularly speak to retailers to find out about any concerns they have, and work with Brentwood Borough Council to enforce the public spaces protection order and tackle anti-social behaviour.
Loughton Town Centre Team have worked closely with officers from other teams to carry out Operation Sceptre patrols and operations to deter and catch anyone who might be involved in violent crime and knife crime.
This work has included looking for hidden weapons and targeting drug dealers.
In Waltham Abbey, the Town Centre Team has been carrying out regular patrols in areas where there has been anti-social behaviour and shoplifting.
They have also been working with officers from other teams to target those involved in drugs supply, resulting in a number of arrests.
If you see our Town Centre Teams out and about, please say hello and let them know of any concerns you have.
You can also find out more about what they’re doing on Facebook, where you can also find details of how to get in touch with them, including Coffee with Cops events and local community meetings.