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Neighbourhood Alert Reports

These reports are as received from the Police Cooordinators, and not edited by me


February 22, 2024


Dorset Police Force Awards 2024


We are excited to announce the launch of the Annual Awards Nomination Process. It is so important to recognise the exceptional work of all our officers, staff and volunteers (which includes Neighbourhood Watch). Nominations can be for officers, staff, members of the special constabulary and volunteers (inc Neighbourhood Watch). The categories are in the attached list. If you would like to nominate either a person or a group please respond to this alert and we will send out nomination process.

Nominations can be made from any individual and all nominations are to be received no later than FRIDAY, 29 MARCH 2024. Any received after this date will unfortunately not be considered.

All winners will be invited to attend the Force Annual Awards Ceremony at the Weymouth & Portland Sailing Academy to receive their respective awards.


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Attachments
Force Award Categories 2024.docx



Message Sent By:
Alyson Moore
(Dorset Police & NHWN, Resilient Community Co-ordinator, Bournemouth, Christchurch & Poole)





February 16, 2024


Who are you really talking to online?

Who are you really talking to online? You may think that that you are talking to the person in the image on your device.

But beware of suspicious accounts on social media that try to build a large following and engagement through questionable means. These accounts may seem real, but are often run by bots or click farms exploiting vulnerable populations.

The goal is to get you to click shady links or divulge personal information, which can then be used for identity theft, scams, or other cybercrimes. Red flags include:

Thousands of new followers daily, many likely fake accounts

Requests to connect off-platform or share personal details

Links to inappropriate content or sketchy websites

Claims of quick money-making opportunities


The people operating these accounts may be human trafficking victims or economically exploited populations who are paid very little. Their passports are sometimes taken away in sweatshop-like conditions.

Protect yourself by being wary of accounts that seem to have inorganic growth. Do not click unknown links or share sensitive information with strangers online. Report suspicious accounts to social media platforms. Together we can stop the exploitation of vulnerable people and make the internet a safer place.



Message Sent By:
Damian Cranny
(Dorset Police, Fraud Protect Officer, Dorset)





February 20, 2024


Attention Facebook users

We want to make you aware of a recent surge in hacked Facebook accounts being used to perpetrate fraud. Fraudsters are gaining access to people's accounts and using them to advertise and sell non-existent event tickets, products, and more - often targeting local community Facebook groups and Marketplace.

Remember, there is more than one victim here - both the person whose account was hacked and those tricked into sending money. If your Facebook account has been hacked and used illegally, make sure to contact Facebook right away to secure it, change your password, and notify contacts. You should also report the incident to Action Fraud.

For more information on how to spot scams and stay safe online, visit the website Get Safe Online, which offers hints and tips.

Here are some tips to help identify hacked Facebook accounts and accounts selling fake event tickets or products:

Look for a change in tone or writing style from the account's previous posts. Hacked accounts often show odd changes if the hacker is posing as the person but not mimicking them well.

Check when the account last posted or had regular activity. If there's a gap of weeks or months, that can indicate it was inactive then suddenly became active again in a questionable way.

Look for friends commenting confusion on the posts selling tickets/products. They likely know if that behaviour seems strange coming from their friend.

Click on the seller's name and check their profile and past posts. Scammers often hack accounts that have been inactive, with few recent posts.

See if the account repeatedly posts the same or very similar ticket/product sales posts. Scammers tend to reuse the same ads across targeted groups.

Check for other posts warning of the account being hacked or fake if the person has reached out to warn their legitimate connections.

Reverse image search any photos of tickets or products. Scammers often steal images from other sites or past events rather than taking their own.

Look out for one another, so please share this message to help prevent further victims. The more awareness we can raise, the less power these fraudsters have to deceive members of our community.
Thank you for your help and vigilance!



Message Sent By:
Damian Cranny
(Dorset Police, Fraud Protect Officer, Dorset)



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Stalking - Fixated Obsessed Unwanted Repeated


Stalking is a pattern of unwanted, repeated behaviour that leaves you feeling scared or distressed. You don’t have to be threatened with violence to be a victim of stalking. Any kind of persistent, unwanted contact that causes distress is still stalking and is unacceptable. But things like romantic comedies can normalise this sort of behaviour, and you may not recognise it as stalking.

When certain behaviours are combined in a way that follows the FOUR pattern - Fixated, Obsessed, Unwanted, Repeated - then its stalking and you should record what’s happened and report it before it escalates.

Watch our video to see how these seemingly small, seemingly harmless gestures can escalate to something far more sinister…

View full article here: https://news.dorset.police.uk/news-article/1f6cb86f-1ecb-ee11-9d61-6045bdd24049

Find out more about stalking and harassment and how to report it on the Dorset Police website here: www.dorset.police.uk/stalking


You can also get advice from the National Stalking Helpline on 0808 802 0300and help and support for the Paladin National Stalking Advocacy Service www.paladinservice.co.uk/get-support


If you, or anyone else is in immediate danger, call 999.



Message Sent By:
Julie Heath
(Dorset Police, Neighbourhood Alert Officer, Dorset)



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Raising awareness of harmful stalking behaviours


This week Dorset Police released a powerful film, which focuses on the pattern of behaviour perpetrated by stalkers towards their victims. The film picks up on the normalisation of stalking behaviours in romantic comedies and other films, which can make it difficult to recognise these acts as unacceptable and potentially dangerous. The film highlights the FOUR pattern – Fixated, Obsessed, Unwanted, Repeated, urging viewers to report stalking if they recognise these behaviours. I encourage everyone to watch it and share it - Stalking: Fixated Obsessed Unwanted Repeated

I know the impact stalking can have on victims. As a candidate for the role of Police and Crime Commissioner back in 2021, I met Samantha Bumford, a victim of stalking. She was raising awareness about the crime and talking about her experience to help improve victim support and campaign for a register for those stalked outside of a relationship. Listening to her, I gained an insight into how destructive stalking can be for victims, and pledged to tackle this offence when I came to office. I know people can underplay the severity stalking has on them, not wanting to make a fuss, or dismissing the acts as ‘normal’. I want to urge anyone who is experiencing the behaviours pinpointed in this film, which follow the FOUR pneumonic, to come forward and report them. It is important, and there are people there to help you.

The more awareness we can raise about the dangerous actions of stalkers and help to dispel the misinformation around what can constitute stalking, the more we can help to protect people. Tackling the issue of stalking is a key feature of my Police and Crime Plan and, alongside the measures used by Dorset Police which include Stalking Protection Orders, I have financially supported the Independent Stalking Advocacy Caseworker service provided by YouTrust. They work with all stalking typologies across Dorset and lead on the stalking clinic, which is attended by Dorset Police, probation services, and health organisations. When referrals come through, YouTrust complete a risk assessment and stalking assessment, exploring the specific typology and then create a bespoke safety plan to match the risks highlighted. The team offer practical and emotional support, working with victims of stalking to report to the police, consider civil and criminal remedies and ongoing support. I have also commissioned Victim Support in Dorset, who support all victims of crime, including those subjected to stalking.

At the end of last year, Dorset Police’s lead on stalking, Detective Chief Superintendent Lindsay Dudfield, wrote in one of my newsletters about the extensive work which goes into dealing with this crime. There are a variety of safeguarding tools the Force use to protect victims including Community Orders, Domestic Violence Protection Orders and Stalking Protecting Orders. Detective Chief Superintendent Dudfield also offered important reassurance to victims who for many reasons may not be able to proceed down the criminal justice path, saying there are mechanisms and safeguarding measures which can still be put in place to protect people.

This week, the release of the stalking film by Dorset Police also coincides with the launch of the Victims Code from the Ministry of Justice. The Victims Code explains the rights that everyone can expect to receive as a victim of crime. Whoever you are and whatever the crime, you have the right to be informed about the criminal justice process and the support available. Criminal justice agencies like the police and the courts service are responsible for making sure that victims receive the rights in the Victims’ Code. You can expect them to tell you about your rights as you go through the criminal justice process. If you decide not to report the crime, you’re still able to get help and hear about the Victims’ Codefrom support services. You can read more about the Victims Code here.

I want to be clear; victims’ voices are heard and will continue to be heard in my fight to make Dorset the safest county. I would encourage anyone who is worried or concerned they have been a victim of stalking to have the confidence to come forward and contact either Dorset Police, Victim Support, or the National Stalking Helpline; you will be listened to.

David Sidwick
Dorset Police and Crime Commissioner




Message Sent By:
Dorset Police & Crime Commissioner





February 13, 2024


Launch of National Campaign Against Fraud


Today sees the launch of the National Campaign Against Fraud which is brought to you by the UK Government in partnership with City of London Police, National Cyber Security and National Crime Agency. The following link will take you directly to the site where you will find information on How to spot fraud, Protecting yourself from fraud, Reporting fraud and Recovery from fraud. This will be supported by national TV and Radio.



Stop! Think Fraud (stopthinkfraud.campaign.gov.uk)



Message Sent By:
Damian Cranny
(Dorset Police, Fraud Protect Officer, Dorset)



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12-week consultation opens for proposed new Community Safety Plan


The following message is sent on behalf of Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Authority


A 12-week consultation has been launched for Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Authority’s proposed new Community Safety Plan.

The plan sets out the priorities and challenges for Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service from now until 2028, covering areas such as prevention, protection, response, governance and people.

Chief Fire Officer Ben Ansell said: “The plan details how we intend to continue working, but also what we intend to review and do differently to meet and reduce the risks we face as an organisation. Public sector finances are under extreme pressure, so it is vital that we look at all parts of the Service to ensure that we are working as efficiently and as effectively as possible.”

The consultation runs from 9am on Friday 9 February until 9am on Friday 3 May. Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Authority will then consider the consultation responses and the final plan at its meeting in June.

Cllr Rebecca Knox, Chair of the Authority, said: “The Community Safety Plan is our ‘roadmap’ for the coming years, so the views of people from across our communities are essential. Whether you are a resident, a local business, a partner, a voluntary group or a charity, we would very much like to hear from you.”

A copy of the draft plan, a summary video and details on how to give your views – including an online form - can be found at:

www.dwfire.org.uk/draft-csp-2024-28-consultation





Message Sent By:
Julie Heath
(Dorset Police, Neighbourhood Alert Officer, Dorset)



February 10, 2024


Supporting victims of sexual abuse and sexual violence


This week is Sexual Abuse and Sexual Violence Awareness Week and I want to take the opportunity to highlight the work being done to support victims of these devastating crimes and tell you about the services my office commission to provide crucial help for the people of Dorset.

Firstly, it is important for me to reinforce the vital reassurance Dorset Police has given to victims of rape, sexual assault, and other sexual offences with the pledge they will be treated with respect and supported when they report a crime. Since I came to office, I have dedicated a key part of my Police and Crime Plan to tackling these horrendous offences of sexual assault. Under the priority to fight violent crime and high harm, I have committed to ensuring that victims of rape and serious sexual assaults are provided with the care and support they need, but also that all victims have the confidence to report these crimes to the police in the first place.

Part of my commitment to tackling these heinous offences include ensuring the Force’s investigative focus is on the perpetrator and I welcome the words of Superintendent Emma Sweetzer, VAWG (Violence Against Women and Girls) lead for Dorset Police who makes clear the Force will pursue perpetrators of sexual offences relentlessly. She says officers have already started to see a shortening of the investigation process and more offenders going to court, adding: “We are committed to continuing to improve the service we offer to all survivors of rape and sexual offences, to bring more offenders to trial and cut the time victims have to wait for justice. Sexual offence investigations require the bravery of survivors to see them through, but the tenacity and professionalism of our investigators and support from our staff and partner organisations will get them through the criminal justice process.”

Through the Force’s involvement with Operation Soteria, a national collaboration which focused on the development of a new operating model for the investigation and prosecution of rape and serious sexual assault cases, the Force is currently implementing the new Rape and Serious Sexual Offences National Operating Model for investigation. This model is the result of the extensive research Op Soteria produced and continues to do through an independent anonymous survey of survivor-victims of rape and other sexual offences. The survey asks anyone who is aged 18 or over, and who has reported a sexual offence to the police, to give their honest feedback on how police handled their case, regardless of the outcome. I would urge people who have been affected by these crimes to take part – your voice and experiences will help shape the Force’s continued progress into improving services and ensure victims voices are heard.

There is support available for victims of sexual assault from a range of different agencies in Dorset. Whether it is the Force’s specially trained officers, or the exceptional services commissioned by my office, there is help available. I want to raise awareness of where you can go in Dorset if you need it. Firstly, the Shores Sexual Assault Referral Centre can provide evidential services even if a victim is unsure about involving the police. I know how important it is for survivors to feel in control and Shores offers this vital service for victims. STARS is a pan-Dorset charity which offers one to one support free of charge for anyone who lives, works or studies in Dorset and has experienced any form of sexual violence at any time in their life. Victim Support is also available for victims regardless of age, gender or circumstances and whether the offence committed against them is recent or historic.

It is crucial to have different types of support available which can be tailored according to the needs of the individual. Whether it is counselling, practical advice or support from an ISVA (Independent Sexual Violence Adviser), a wide range of services are available to the people of Dorset through the services my office commissions. I urge anyone who has experienced these abhorrent crimes to reach out. There are people who can help you and advise you.

I want Dorset to be a place where victims feel confident to report crime, and that when they do, they are supported by the best services available to them. I am determined that victims are at the centre of policing, are given tailored support that works best for them as individuals, and importantly, have their voices heard as we work to make Dorset the safest place.


David Sidwick
Dorset Police and Crime Commissioner



Shores Sexual Assault Referral Centre - 0800 970 9954 (All calls are confidential)

STARS Dorset - 01202 308855

Victim Support Dorset - 0300 3030 163





Message Sent By:
Dorset Police & Crime Commissioner




February 6, 2024


Sexual Abuse and Sexual Violence Awareness Week 2024, 5 – 11 February

During Sexual Abuse and Sexual Violence Awareness Week 2024, Dorset Police is sending the positive message to all survivors of sexual offences that when they report it to the police they will be treated with respect and supported.


Superintendent Emma Sweetzer of Dorset Police said: “Anyone who reports rape, sexual assault or other sexual offence to Dorset Police can be confident that they will be taken seriously and treated sensitively by our officers. Our focus will be on the crime that has taken place, on investigating it, protecting and supporting them while we do so, and on bringing the perpetrator to justice.

“Sexual offence investigations require the bravery of survivors to see them through, but the tenacity and professionalism of our investigators and support from our staff and partner organisations will get them through the criminal justice process.”

Dorset Police is currently implementing the new Rape and Serious Sexual Offences National Operating Model for investigation which was the result of extensive research during Operation Soteria, in which the force took part.

That research continues with an independent anonymous survey of survivor-victims of rape and other sexual offences. The survey asks anyone who is aged 18 or over, and who has reported a sexual offence to the police, to give their honest feedback on how police handled their case, regardless of the outcome. The survey can be accessed here, and there is an easy read version at the same link: https://tinyurl.com/1experiencesurvey

Superintendent Sweetzer concluded: “Survivors of rape and other sexual offences will be treated with dignity and respect, listened to and believed by Dorset Police.

“Dorset Police will pursue perpetrators of sexual offences relentlessly and we have already started to see a shortening of the investigation process and more offenders going to court. We are committed to continuing to improve the service we offer to all survivors of rape and sexual offences, to bring more offenders to trial and cut the time victims have to wait for justice.”


If you or anyone else is in danger call 999

Non-emergency reports and support www.dorset.police.uk




Message Sent By:
Julie Heath
(Dorset Police, Neighbourhood Alert Officer, Dorset)




February 3, 2024


Dorset Precept Approved


This week the Dorset Police and Crime Panel unanimously approved plans to increase the amount of money residents in the county pay for their policing service. At a meeting of the panel at Dorset County Hall, members agreed the increase of £13 for a band D household, as set out in our recent survey.

The agreement from the Panel to increase the policing part of the precept comes after an on-line survey was held with the public. In total, 1,984 people responded, and of those 75% agreed that Dorset Police requires additional funding and 57% said they would pay more.

The precept survey ran for nearly 6 weeks, from December 19, 2023, to January 26, 2024. The survey was available online throughout this period, promoted via local media, Dorset Alert, the OPCC website, social media, face to face engagement events across the county as well as an online focus group event where members of the public were able to directly ask me questions on the precept.

I’d like to thank everyone who took part in the survey and I appreciate the feedback you have given me. As I have stated previously, asking the people of Dorset for more money is not something I wanted to do, especially at a time when so many are feeling the pinch. I am dedicated to ensuring Dorset remains one of the safest places in the country to live and work. That’s why in order to maintain the progress we have made so far; I have had to ask you for more to ensure the police can continue their vital work.

Over the past year we have seen policing operations including Operation Scorpion and Operation Viper continue to tackle illegal drugs and county lines in Dorset; I have funded knife wands for every police car across the county and purchased a portable knife arch to utilise as part of ongoing intelligence-led hot spot policing; my office has also brought in almost £1 million of additional grant funding from central government to tackle issues under the violence against women and girls agenda to bring in new initiatives to help tackle the priorities that were set by you back in 2021, when I became Commissioner.

I am pleased to say that residents and visitors to Blandford, Swanage and Lyne Regis have seen the police station front desks re-open as part of a pilot scheme and that Dorset Police now has 72 Community Contact Points across the county. These contact points offer a facility to report crime and incidents as well as offering prevention and engagement opportunities for the public. Boscombe police station has reopened as an operational base for local policing as part of efforts to improve response times to emergency calls in East Bournemouth and Christchurch. Dorset Police has also successfully responded to my challenge to make improvements to the time it was taking to respond to the most serious emergency calls and waiting times have reduced by 10% overall.

There has been a 14% reduction in ASB via various police operations including Op Relentless, Op Nightjar and Op Fireglow and there have been a range of rural crime initiatives, including the introduction of the Rural Mounted Volunteers. I am also delighted to say that Dorset’s Rural Crime team won a national award this year for tackling acquisitive crime, all while cutting the cost the cost of rural crime by 28%.

It is no secret I remain frustrated that Dorset is one of the lowest funded forces in the country. Since I became Police and Crime Commissioner, I have relentlessly lobbied for a fairer funding deal for Dorset. I want to see the disparity between forces addressed and rectified with a better solution. While the results of this lobbying will take time to materialise, I assure you I will continue to raise this issue until we see sparsity and seasonality addressed in the way our Force is funded by central government.

I am honoured to represent the residents of Dorset. I do not take it for granted and will continue to fight to ensure Dorset is the safest county by sticking to the Police and Crime Plan which means being tough on crime, keeping people safe and putting victims first.

David Sidwick
Dorset Police and Crime Commissioner




Message Sent By:
Dorset Police & Crime Commissioner





February 1, 2024


Love is in the Air - But Beware of Romance Fraudsters!


With Valentine's Day right around the corner, love is definitely in the air! But unfortunately, this time of year is also prime time for romance fraud. Everyone deserves to find true love, not get tricked by a scammer. Here are some tips to spot and avoid romance fraud this month:

Be wary of someone who declares love too quickly - Real relationships take time to build. If an online match professes their love before you've even met, it could be a red flag. Fraudsters often claim to be military members, traveling or working abroad, widowed, or otherwise unable to meet in person.

Look out for requests for money - Never send money, gift cards, or banking/personal details to someone you haven't met in person, no matter their excuse. Fraudsters are happy to wait months before even asking for money. This normally involves an urgent situation or emergency such as a call from a Doctor stating that the person you have fallen in love with has been in an accident and needs money for an operation.

Do a reverse image search - Scammers often steal photos from other sites to create fake profiles. You can do a reverse image search using Google to see if the photos are stolen from somewhere else.

Video chat before meeting in person - Ask to video chat so you can verify their identity. If they make excuses, it's probably a scammer avoiding showing their real face. However also beware as AI can now create lifelike images and videos of people that can talk and interact with you.

Talk to your friends and family - Don't keep an online relationship secret. Discuss it with people you trust to get another perspective. They may spot red flags you're missing. Visit the website LOVESAID where you can get valuable help, advice and support.

Look out for requests for money - Never send money, gift cards, or banking/personal details to someone you haven't met in person, no matter their excuse. Fraudsters are happy to wait months before even asking for money. This normally involves an urgent situation or emergency such as a call from a Doctor stating that the person you have fallen in love with has been in an accident and needs money for an operation.

It is important to understand that the fraudsters are skilled at their job using tactics akin to domestic abuse. Isolated from friends and family the victim’s only crime is giving their all to someone that they believe is genuine. It is very important that people understand that men, women and the LGBTQ+ community all ages and life skills are targeted. Nobody in a Romance fraud is stupid or gullible as they have been coerced and controlled by master criminals. It is common for victims to feel ashamed but it is important that victim’s report to Action Fraud.

Stay alert this Valentine's season, and remember that a genuine connection takes time to build. Don't let a anyone rush you into anything before you're ready! Wishing you safe, happy, and healthy relationships in 2024.



Message Sent By:
Damian Cranny
(Dorset Police, Fraud Protect Officer, Dorset)





January 27, 2024


Highlighting the importance of our Neighbourhood Police teams

Neighbourhood Policing Teams are the backbone of community policing, which is why during this week dedicated to highlighting the vital work they undertake, I have been delighted to see the spotlight trained on our officers, PCSOs, and volunteers in Dorset. From proactive engagement with the public at drop-in events, to enforcement work keeping our residents safe and protected, Neighbourhood Policing Week has demonstrated a snapshot of what our teams do, day in and day out across the county.

Each policing area in Dorset has a dedicated neighbourhood team, supported by a neighbourhood enforcement team and a rural crime team that work alongside partners to deal with the issues which are important to local communities such as anti-social behaviour. Their presence does much more than just deter potential offenders; it aims to reassure both residents and visitors and enhance feelings of safety. Since coming to office, you have been clear with me that you want to see more visible policing. I agree with you entirely. It is why I made visibility and connectivity a key priority in my Police and Crime Plan. I want to assure you I remain absolutely committed to building public confidence and trust between the Force and people of Dorset. I want to make sure the public not only feel safe in their communities, but also feel confident in reporting and raising issues they are experiencing where they live and work.

During this week I have seen the Neighbourhood Policing Teams undertake a range of actions from pursuing suspects, dealing with anti-social behaviour issues, working alongside our partner agencies in response to reports, and carrying out engagements with residents and community groups to name just a few. For example, the Bournemouth and Poole Police teams have conducted anti-social behaviour patrols in different known hotspots, attended residents’ meetings and events, helped a community set up a Neighbourhood Watch programme and conducted welfare checks on vulnerable people, as well as much, much more. I want Dorset residents to know their local officers which is why the Community Contact Points the Force has introduced across the county are so vital. These opportunities are drop-in events with local police teams where residents can raise concerns and report crime and incidents face-to-face. Each event is advertised on the Dorset Police website and social media platforms for the relevant team. All you have to do is enter your postcode at www.dorset.police.uk to find your local neighbourhood policing team. There you will find information about the up-and-coming Community Contact Point opportunities and details of how to follow your local team on social media.

I took the opportunity to see some of this work first-hand in Dorchester this week when I joined PCSOs Mark and Charlotte as they patrolled the town centre. We visited shops on the high street to speak with loss prevention officers and staff to ensure there was no suspicious activity or issues, as well as checking in at premises which had been targeted by shoplifters in the past. During the patrol, we took the opportunity to talk to members of the public, hear their concerns about the high street and signpost to the relevant agencies best placed to help.

Dorset Police’s Neighbourhood Sergeant for Bridport and Sherborne, Mike Brown, said: “Our local communities are at the heart of everything we do, and we strive to ensure everyone feels safe where they live and work. Through our regular patrols, enforcement work and community contact points, we want to make sure we’re staying visible and connected to the people and communities we serve. I would like to encourage people to engage with us at our regular events, meet your local officers and report incidents face to face. We value the contact we have with residents and every report made helps us to make Dorset a safer place.”

We all have a part to play in keeping our communities safe. I’d like more people to find out who their local policing teams are and if possible, take the opportunity to attend a Community Contact Point. Whether it’s just to say hello, or if you’re worried about something where you live, they can give advice or point you in the right direction if it’s best dealt with by another agency. Your report might be the missing piece of information they need to deal with an offence, so I would encourage you to make that step in engaging with your local officers.

Lastly, I’d like to take this opportunity to thank all our teams in Dorset for their hard work and dedication. Working together, we can all ensure Dorset becomes the safest county to live and work.

David Sidwick
Dorset Police and Crime Commissioner




Message Sent By:
Dorset Police & Crime Commissioner



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Force welcomes historical data wash results and pledges ongoing vetting commitment

Dorset Police has pledged its ongoing commitment to ensure that all police officers, staff and volunteers undergo ongoing stringent and robust vetting procedures.

This follows the publication of the historical data wash where over 300,000 officers, staff and volunteers working across UK police forces have been checked against the Police National Database – this included 3,185 employees and volunteers in Dorset.

In the data returned to the Force it was found that there were no cases that needed criminal or disciplinary investigation, management intervention or re-vetting.


View full article here: https://news.dorset.police.uk/news-article/1c92f1c1-e9b9-ee11-9d5f-6045bdd24049




Message Sent By:
Julie Heath
(Dorset Police, Neighbourhood Alert Officer, Dorset)






Advice to keyless car owners following attempted theft of vehicles

Dorset Police is releasing footage of an attempted theft of a keyless car to raise awareness and help protect motorists.

Offenders are using a device from outside a property to connect to a car key’s signal and trick the vehicle into thinking the key is nearby, meaning it will unlock automatically and the ignition can be started.

The Force has recently seen one incident involving an attempt to use this method at around 2.30am on Wednesday 24 January 2024 in Poole, but thankfully no entry was gained to any vehicles.

Two men were reported acting suspiciously outside an address, with one of them carrying a backpack on his front and holding a wire above his head to try and connect to the key’s signal.

Police Constable Harvey Trehane, of Dorset Police, said: “We are issuing CCTV footage from the reported incident to highlight the tactics that offenders are using.

“Keyless vehicles are targeted by criminals using signal equipment and we want to raise awareness of simple steps that can be taken to protect your car.

“If you see anyone acting suspiciously around vehicles in a similar way to the footage, please contact Dorset Police.”

How to protect your keyless entry car


When at home keep your car key (and the spare) well away from the car.

Put the keys in a screened or signal-blocking pouch, such as a Faraday Bag, and check if the bag or pouch is still working every few months.

Reprogramme your keys if you buy a second-hand car.

Turn off wireless signals on your fob when it's not being used.


For further crime prevention advice, please visit: Preventing car and vehicle theft | Crime Prevention | Dorset Police

To watch the moving CCTV footage, please visit our Dorset Police Facebook or X accounts.




Message Sent By:
Julie Heath
(Dorset Police, Neighbourhood Alert Officer, Dorset)




January 23, 2024


Dorset Police joins national neighbourhood policing week

Neighbourhood teams across Dorset will be highlighting the work they do as part of a national Neighbourhood Policing Week of action.

The third national Neighbourhood Policing Week is a collaboration between the College of Policing and the National Police Chiefs Council.

Forces up and down the country will be joining together to recognise the work of local policing teams and learn from each other.

From Monday 22 January, local policing teams across the county will be promoting activity that neighbourhood officers, police community support officers (PCSOs) and volunteers do to protect the public and keep people safe.

Each policing area across Dorset has a dedicated neighbourhood team, supported by a neighbourhood enforcement team and rural crime team that collaborate with partners to target activity, tackling issues that are important to local communities.

View full article here: https://news.dorset.police.uk/news-article/aa3624eb-11b9-ee11-9d5f-6045bdd24049

Find your local officer, see upcoming local events and meetings, and read about policing priorities in your area by visiting www.dorset.police.uk/area/your-area/.



Message Sent By:
Julie Heath
(Dorset Police, Neighbourhood Alert Officer, Dorset)




January 20, 2024


Op Relentless Community Fund in Action

This week, I’d like to tell you more about the Operation Relentless Community Fund as I have been visiting some of the organisations who were successful in their funding applications during round three last year. Over the past few days, I’ve had the pleasure of meeting some of the people across Dorset who are intent on making a difference to their communities and seizing the opportunity to enact positive change.

I know the detrimental impact ASB can have on communities and individuals, and that is why I am so intent on driving down offences which cause harm to the people of Dorset. Tackling ASB is a key part of my Police and Crime Plan and through this fund, I have seen the positive impact Op Relentless projects are making across the county. These initiatives are seeing real results as well, as the residents of Littlemoor can attest. Following the installation of cameras at the Top Club, partially funded by Op Relentless, this area of Weymouth saw an 80% per cent drop in ASB incidents and importantly, residents said they felt safer. I am proud that the money granted through Op Relentless gives people the power to come together and tackle issues in such an effective way for their communities.

I was clear when establishing the Op Relentless Community Fund that I wanted the grants to go to projects which reduce ASB and increase the feeling of safety in areas disproportionately affected. So far, the fund, which was set-up in 2021, has supported 31 organisations with more than £117,000 of funding. Applications for sums from £100 up to £5,000 have been approved over the years and successful projects from all three rounds have included crucial work to protect localities with CCTV cameras, community outreach work, and projects for young people including skateboarding sessions and gym membership as well.

In the latest funding round, I am pleased to see a variety of projects in locations across Dorset, three of which I have visited this week with my team. Charlton Down Cricket Club near Dorchester has seen new CCTV cameras installed on their premises following issues with littering and the presence of items relating to drugs and alcohol. There have also been incidents involving damage to property at the site. I am pleased this funding will enable those from the cricket club to feel their premises are safer thanks to the new security measures.

Elsewhere I also met members of St Andrew’s Church Community Centre in Kinson, Bournemouth whose funding has been put towards measures to protect the local area around the church and Kinson and West Howe Foodbank. The community has seen numerous incidents of ASB over the past few years including windows broken, fly tipping, motorbikes and dirt bikes bring raced on the land and lane, drug dealing and much more. These are the incidents I want to help stop. The community centre is used seven days a week by a variety of people including parent and baby groups and exercise classes and the food bank for two days a week. In the current cost of living crisis, it is crucial people feel safe accessing services like the ones offered here, and I am pleased this will help towards that.

In Weymouth, I was delighted to see the funding to Weymouth Town Council put towards two SIA (Security Industry Authority) staff to support the existing Resort Team for eight weeks during the summer months. These patrols will help to create high visibility and a sense of safety for visitors and residents to the town. The key objectives of the SIA workers are to address ASB, provide intelligence to the council and Dorset Police and promote Weymouth as a safe and welcoming place for everyone in the town. It comes after the town saw a 40% reduction in ASB incidents during the 100 Days of Summer campaign, and I am pleased this effective joint working will continue to make a positive impact.

I want the Op Relentless Community Fund to empower communities to help address incidents of ASB affecting them. I hope to run a further round of the fund in the next few months and ask people to keep an eye on our website for an announcement. Together, through policing, the work of our partners and a united approach, we can drive down these offences and make Dorset the safest place to live and work.


David Sidwick
Dorset Police and Crime Commissioner




Message Sent By:
Dorset Police & Crime Commissioner




January 13, 2024


Precept - Answering some of your questions

In this week’s newsletter, I’d like to respond to some of the feedback you’ve given us as part of our precept survey so far by outlining some of the work taking place. During our recent engagement events, you’ve told us what you would like to see happening, so I would like to take the time to address this and reassure you that in many of the examples raised we’re already tackling these issues. This is because we’ve listened to what you’ve told us previously and have taken steps to act and improve. As I have said before, asking the people of Dorset for more money in the policing precept is not something I want to do. However, to provide you with the level of policing we require in the county, and to ensure we can maintain what we already have, it is sadly necessary.

Along with my team, I have heard your views and feedback, and I thank you wholeheartedly. Whether you have agreed, disagreed, or raised issues, I am listening intently and want you to know I am grateful for your engagement across the board.

I also want to make clear that I have been fighting for more funding from the government since I came to office and will continue to do so. To reassure you, I have been relentless in lobbying for a fairer funding deal for Dorset, to ensure less burden on you, the taxpayer. Dorset is one of the least funded forces in the country from the national government grant. We are second from bottom in the table of 41 forces and I have been fighting on your behalf to change that. You can read more about the discrepancy in funding here.

Visibility

Many of you have mentioned officer visibility. While last year Dorset Police exceeded the target for the Government’s National Police Uplift Programme with 174 new officers coming into the force, I know that feelings of community safety are about more than just numbers. I want to assure you that I continue to work alongside the Chief Constable to ensure the public see and feel the difference as these officers join our teams. I also want to tell you that the significant majority of our new recruits are going into community roles. Building trust and confidence with our communities is a top priority in my Police and Crime Plan, and I am dedicated to delivering this. Neighbourhood Policing Teams are the backbone of community policing and I aim to ensure each area of Dorset is served by officers with a strong understanding of the needs of each of our communities. Through more community contact points in the past year, along with engagement events, specialist teams including the Rural Crime Team, and a recent improvement in response times across the force, we are working hard to deliver this important change for the people of Dorset. I know there is work still to do though, and will ensure I continue driving this change, with the force, on your behalf.

Anti-social behaviour

Tackling anti-social behaviour remains a priority for both Dorset Police and myself. I appreciate that for many Dorset residents, it is often the less serious crimes, the nuisance incidents, which can cause distress and upset. I am pleased the force has continued to implement Operation Relentless to tackle ASB, but I know enforcement alone is not the answer. This is why I have thrown my weight and funding behind the Operation Relentless Community Fund. This funds projects and initiatives to reduce ASB and increase community safety, and I am pleased to say we have seen success in reducing incidences across the county. This project has supported more than 31 organisations across Dorset with more than £117,000 of funding so far. Alongside the work with the Fix The Future initiative which helps to create more prevention and diversion schemes for young people, I want to assure you I am working hard to ensure you feel safer in your communities and young people are given more development opportunities.

County Lines

When it comes to tackling drug crime, I want you to know more action has been taken in the past year, with this focus continuing in 2024. Operation Scorpion and Operation Viper are set to disrupt even more drug supply lines, with the next phase of Scorpion taking place soon. The most recent phase saw 26 drug-related arrests, more than £93,000 worth of illegal drugs seized as well as the profits and paraphernalia of drug dealing, including cash and weapons taken off our streets. Away from enforcement, the prevention work undertaken by Dorset’s Combatting Drugs Partnership (CDP), in which I am the Senior Responsible Officer, has recently been praised by the House of Commons Public Accounts Committee. Through the CDP in Dorset we focus on four key areas – enforcement, treatment and recovery, prevention, and joint analytics across the county – and we intend to build upon this brilliant progress even further this year. Dealing with the issue of drugs is complex and requires a robust approach, but I am determined that tackling the problem of drugs and drug-related harm is at the top of our agenda.

Burglary

The most recent report from the Office of National Statistics in the latter half of 2023, confirmed that there had been a 14 per cent drop in the number of residential burglaries in Dorset. And while I am pleased the force continues to see a fall in this harmful offence, I want to take this opportunity to reassure you that Dorset Police do attend all domestic burglaries and have reiterated their commitment to uphold their 100% attendance rate. I vow to ensure this approach continues in our county. I understand the detrimental impact burglaries can have on victims. I know it is about more than just having possessions stolen, it is about the fundamental right to feel safe and secure in your own home.

Knife Crime

I want to reassure you that while we have the second lowest rate of knife crime across England and Wales, this does not mean we are complacent. In fact, we have intensified our efforts towards tackling this harmful offence. Just some of the measures include launching the Bournemouth Town Team with Dorset Police and other partners, my office also funded knife wands for every patrol car as well as a portable knife arch, and the Force-led Operation Fireglow and Operation Nightjar also tackled ASB and serious crime in their targeted patrols. I am clear though, dealing with the scourge of knife crime is not just the responsibility of the police. It is down to all of us, from local authorities, partners, charities, and individuals, to work together to drive down this offence. My campaign for a Violence Reduction Unit in Dorset will continue apace in 2024, as I strongly believe if we are to keep Dorset a safe place and ensure it remains so for the next generations, this is the way forward.

I hope by addressing some of these topics you have a better understanding of the work I am continuing to push for and get done on your behalf, and why I am having to ask for more in this year’s precept. My commitment to you is to continue working relentlessly to get a fairer funding deal to ensure Dorset becomes the safest county to live and work.

You can take the survey here

David Sidwick
Dorset Police and Crime Commissioner




Message Sent By:
Dorset Police & Crime Commissioner




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More than 100 arrests made during Christmas campaign crackdown on drink and drug driving


Dorset Police's Christmas drink and drug drive campaign, which targeted people who drive while under the influence of alcohol or drugs, proved successful.


Between Friday 1 December 2023 and Monday 1 January 2024, party-goers were encouraged to plan their journeys home, reminded of the potential consequences if they are caught driving while under the influence and encouraged to report suspected drink or drug drivers to the police.

During the campaign, Dorset Police arrested 113 people in connection with 127 suspected drink and drug driving offences during December, and some drivers were arrested on suspicion of both drink and drug-related offences. Of the 113 arrests, 71 people were arrested on suspicion of drink driving; 53 people on suspicion of drug driving and 3 further arrests were made for failing to provide a sample for analysis.

The number of arrests made during the campaign has increased when compared to the same campaign period last year, when 85 arrests were made.

View full article here: https://news.dorset.police.uk/news-article/407674c5-a0b0-ee11-9d5f-6045bdd24049

If you suspect someone of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, please dial 999 immediately with the vehicle information and direction of travel.

If you have information relating to someone who regularly drives under the influence of drugs or alcohol, please call 101 or fill in an intelligence form on our website: www.dorset.police.uk.




Message Sent By:
Julie Heath
(Dorset Police, Neighbourhood Alert Officer, Dorset)






January 9, 2024


Update in relation to reported assault in Christchurch

A man has been identified and interviewed by officers following a CCTV appeal in relation to an alleged assault in Christchurch.


Dorset Police received a report at 8.10pm on Friday 22 December 2023 of a fight outside The Thomas Tripp pub in Wick Lane.

During the incident a man from Bournemouth – aged in his 30s – was reportedly knocked unconscious and taken to hospital for treatment.

Officers attended and a 20-year-old man from the New Forest area in Hampshire and a 27-year-old man from the Dorchester area were arrested on suspicion of affray. They have both been released under investigation.

Following a CCTV appeal to identify a further individual officers wanted to speak to in connection with the incident, a 19-year-old man from the New Forest area has attended for a voluntary police interview and he has also been released under investigation as enquiries continue.

We would like to thank everyone who shared our appeal.



Message Sent By:
Julie Heath
(Dorset Police, Neighbourhood Alert Officer, Dorset)




January 5, 2024


Precept - Why I'm asking you for more

Asking you, the residents of Dorset for more of your hard-earned money for the policing precept is not something I wanted to do. While I know £13 a year - £1.08 a month for a Band D household – may not seem like a lot to some people, I want you to know that I recognise it is more pressure on your household budgets and incomes at a time when everyone is feeling the pinch.

However, I want to be clear. While the government’s limit of £13 is the most we can ask for this year, in Dorset it is below what’s really needed to support the force in the work they are doing. Dorset is one of the least funded forces from the national government grant. We are second from bottom in the table of 41 forces, and frustratingly for me, that means a more significant proportion of the police funding needs to come from the precept.

This year, due partly to the rate of inflation now and throughout the past 12 months, we need £13 a month just to be able to maintain a ‘stand still point’. That’s why in my survey, I am asking if theoretically you might be prepared to pay more. The reason I am asking this is purely hypothetical. I want to be able to show the government that people in Dorset value policing and know our force is underfunded and needs more. Your views and support will help me demonstrate that our police force in Dorset needs more money from a fairer deal.

Since I became your Police and Crime Commissioner in 2021, I have been relentless in lobbying for a fairer funding deal for Dorset. I have called for the government to consider ‘seasonality and sparsity’ – how busy our officers are especially over summer, along with the size and rurality of the county. It’s frustrating for me to see the discrepancies in force funding across the country and know we need - and deserve - more. Just over half of our total budget comes from central government, which forces us to raise the remainder through council tax contributions – the policing precept. But for example, across the country the West Midlands police force receives approximately 80% of their funding from the government. When you consider the pressures Dorset Police deal with for much of the year due to the ‘seasonality’ in which we can see 13 million people visiting our county on day trips and 1.8million on holiday, it is plain to see why I’m fighting for a fairer deal. And I want to assure you I won’t give up, not until this disparity is fully recognised and rectified.

We are an ambitious force, and thanks to the hard work and dedication of our officers, staff, and volunteers, we overachieve in many areas. But the Chief Constable and I want to continue to progress with this work on your behalf, not stand still. The settlement we have been handed falls short of what we need to move forward and progress further. It means difficult decisions must be made, decisions we do not want to take but will have to in order to provide a responsible balanced budget. My top priority is to continue delivering on the seven year Police and Crime Plan which is working for the people of Dorset.

Dorset remains one of the safest places in the country, and I want it to be the safest. We are second in the country for the highest number of Rape and Serious Sexual Offence prosecutions, and we also have the second lowest number of knife crimes in the country this year. In 2023, Dorset also saw the highest number of officers it has had since the introduction of PCC’s. I know you wanted to feel more connected to local officers and am pleased to say 72 Police Community Contact Points have taken place across the county. This has enabled the force to maximise community policing, multi-agency working and frontline deployment. While this is a great starting point, I know we still have a way to go. I want to drive for consistency for all Dorset’s communities and it’s why I won’t give up my fight for a fairer funding deal for Dorset. This year we’ve also brought in more money than ever through successful bids which enable us to launch new projects towards the protection of women and girls against violence, as well as funding for initiatives to prevent anti-social behaviour. We’ve robustly tackled the issues of drugs with more prevention, treatment and tough enforcement with Operation Scorpion and Operation Viper. We’ve launched a range of rural crime initiatives including our Rural Mounted Volunteers schemes and have an award-winning expanded rural crime team who are cutting rural crime significantly with the cost of rural crime falling by 28%. But without more money from central government, we can’t progress. This money is essential as I believe that you, the residents of Dorset deserve a police force able to continually evolve and improve and remain ambitious for its residents.

I implore you to fill in this survey and help in my fight for fairer funding for Dorset. Use your voice to help shape the future of policing in our county. The results will assist in deciding how best to spend our budgets and enable me to continue the fight on your behalf for fairer funding. Completing the survey only takes a few minutes, and I thank you for taking the time to fill it in and hopefully share it with family and friends and colleagues.

I am honoured to represent the residents of Dorset and want to assure you that I do not take it for granted. I’m fighting to make Dorset the safest county for all of us and achieving a better funding deal is integral to that.

Take the survey now: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/Precept24DorsetAlert


David Sidwick
Dorset Police and Crime Commissioner




Message Sent By:
Dorset Police & Crime Commissioner





December 29, 2023


Have your say on police funding in Dorset!

Have you taken the Dorset Policing Precept Survey yet?

Funding your police service is an ongoing priority for me, ensuring the Chief Constable has the resources needed to continue the good work already happening across the county. Therefore, it is vital we are able to meet rising cost pressures and deliver a balanced budget moving forward.

As the Police and Crime Commissioner, I place great emphasis on my responsibility to ensure your views help shape the future of policing in our county. This survey is vitally important, and the results will have an impact on every local resident and business in Dorset. I will use the information shared through this process to set the policing element of council tax precept for 2024/25 and to help in deciding how best to allocate our budget.

The survey has the potential to make Dorset a safer place for us all, so thank you for taking the time to add your views and please share the survey with friends, family, and work colleagues so that we can get the greatest possible involvement from residents.

Take the survey now: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/Precept24DorsetAlert


David Sidwick
Dorset Police and Crime Commissioner




Message Sent By:
Dorset Police & Crime Commissioner



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CCTV appeal following reported assault in Christchurch

Detectives investigating an alleged assault in Christchurch are issuing a CCTV image of a man they would like to identify.

Dorset Police received a report at 8.10pm on Friday 22 December 2023 of a fight outside The Thomas Tripp pub in Wick Lane.

During the incident, a man from Bournemouth – aged in his 30s – was reportedly knocked unconscious and taken to hospital for treatment.

Officers attended and a 20-year-old man from the New Forest area in Hampshire and a 27-year-old man from the Dorchester area were arrested on suspicion of affray. They have both been released on police bail while enquiries continue.

Detective Constable Robin Mackay, of BCP CID, said: “I am continuing to investigate this incident and would ask any witnesses who have not already spoken to police to please get in touch.

As part of my enquiries I have obtained a CCTV image of a man I would like to identify and I would ask anyone who recognises him to please contact Dorset Police.”

View image here: https://news.dorset.police.uk/news-article/86d8311e-99a4-ee11-9d5e-6045bdd24049


Anyone with information relating to this matter is asked to contact Dorset Police at www.dorset.police.uk, quoting Operation Interest or occurrence number 55230200298.
Alternatively, independent charity Crimestoppers can be contacted anonymously online at Crimestoppers-uk.org or by calling Freephone 0800 555 111.



Message Sent By:
Julie Heath
(Dorset Police, Neighbourhood Alert Officer, Dorset)



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Report it Right - Dorset

People in Dorset are being asked to check whether they need to contact the police before they report any incidents this New Year.

Call handlers receive thousands of calls every year asking for help which the police are unable to give, such as noisy neighbours and lost dogs.

Dorset Police is now urging people to remember the slogan “When something’s wrong - Report it right” to ensure callers get the best help from the most appropriate service and without taking up the time of police staff who may otherwise dealing with more urgent queries.

Chief Superintendent Gavin Dudfield, of Dorset Police, said: “We work extremely hard with our partners to provide the best possible service to people in the county, but we need members of the public to make sure they are reporting their issues to the right organisation.

“We see a significant number of calls reporting issues relating to parking, noisy neighbours and lost dogs which should be reported to the local council or other agencies.

“We want you to get the help you need as soon as possible and save you time. So, please try to speak with the right people from the start.”


Examples of concerns which police cannot help with include:

Noise Pollution
This is dealt with by the Environmental Health Department of your local council.

Lost or found dogs
The local dog warden should be able to help with this.

Bad Parking
The council’s parking enforcement department deals with this.

Legal Advice
Citizens Advice may be able to help with this.

Power Outages
There is a dedicated emergency line – 105 – for power cuts.


Of course, when there is an emergency or crime in progress, people should still call 999 and non-urgent incidents can be reported online via our website at Report | Dorset Police or by calling 101.



Message Sent By:
Julie Heath
(Dorset Police, Neighbourhood Alert Officer, Dorset)




December 23, 2023


A look back at 2023

The year is almost at a close, and I’d like to take the opportunity to reflect on the progress made over the past 12 months as we work to make Dorset the safest county. From new partnerships to significant funding successes, it’s been a year of progress, but I want to reassure you I am firmly focused on 2024 and continuing to deliver for the people of Dorset.

Here are my highlights from 2023.

1. Cut Crime and Anti-Social Behaviour

From new CCTV to community outreach work, my aim to robustly tackle anti-social behaviour has been well-served by Dorset Police’s continued implementation of Operation Relentless. Along with the community fund administered by my office which funds projects and initiatives to reduce ASB and increase community safety, we have seen success in reducing incidences across the county. Indeed, the 100 Days of Summer policing operation tackling ASB in Weymouth led to a 40% reduction in ASB and criminal activity incidents compared to previous years, thanks to robust policing and regular interaction with the community and visitors.

Along with the Op Relentless community fund, which has supported 31 organisations across Dorset with more than £117,000 of funding, I am also proud of the work undertaken with the Fix The Future initiative, which aims to create more prevention and diversion schemes across Dorset by supporting projects and initiatives to benefit young people and their communities. This year we launched round two with some fantastic applications proving successful.

2. Make Policing More Visible and Connected

It has been great to see Community Contact Points being used across Dorset, alongside our mobile police station front desk and office. The aim of the community contact points is to increase accessibility and visibility in local communities, offering a facility to report crime and incidents as well as offering prevention and engagement opportunities for the public.

Another encouraging result has been the Force’s successful response to a challenge I issued them earlier this year to make improvements to the time it was taking to respond to the most serious emergency calls. I am delighted to see waiting times reduce by 10% overall and look forward to seeing this progress continue as we deliver a better service to the people of Dorset.

3. Fight Violent Crime and High Harm

There will be no let-up in our fight against knife crime. While we have the second lowest rate of knife crime across England and Wales, that does not mean we are complacent. This year we intensified our efforts which included the launch of the Bournemouth Town Team with Dorset Police and our partners, my office funded knife wands for every patrol car as well as a portable knife arch and the Force-led Operation Fireglow and Operation Nightjar targeted ASB and serious crime. I know there is much more still to do, which is why my campaign for a Violence Reduction Unit in Dorset will continue apace in 2024.

I was also pleased to welcome the law which made possession of NOS – Nitrous Oxide – illegal. I have been campaigning for this to happen for some time and to see this law in action has been a significant milestone in my fight to protect the most vulnerable. In Dorset, Operation Scorpion and Operation Viper will continue their excellent work disrupting drug supply lines in 2024.

4. Fight Rural Crime

Dorset is blessed with strong, proud rural communities, and I was pleased to see NFU Mutual’s annual report showing a 28% drop in the cost of crime for Dorset, compared to an increase of 22.1% nationally. In October we launched our Rural Mounted Volunteers scheme which sees volunteers on horseback work with the Dorset Police Rural Crime Team, providing intelligence and information to support and protect our rural communities. This is just one more weapon in the armoury when it comes to taking the fight to the criminals who plague our countryside.

I also confirmed funding for an evidence gathering role to enable further enforcement of fly-tipping offenders in Dorset. I know from a Rural Crime Survey we conducted this year, that fly-tipping is the rural crime which concerns you the most and I am happy to have listened and acted to provide this important role.

5. Put Victims and Communities First

Alongside the brilliant services my office commission including Victim Support and Restorative Justice Dorset, we have seen two new initiatives launch this year to ensure victims and communities are at the front and centre of the criminal justice process. One of these is the VAWG (Violence Against Women and Girls) Improvement Panel, which reviews Dorset Police’s VAWG agenda, ensuring the Force is delivering the most effective and compassionate service for victims of VAWG-related crimes. We also announced the Immediate Justice pilot scheme, which will help to tackle anti-social behaviour. This pilot is designed so swift and visible punishments are delivered to those who have committed ASB and other low-level crimes.

6. Make Every Penny Count

I continue to lobby government for a better, fairer deal for Dorset. As you may have seen, I have launched our annual precept survey this week, asking you to have your say on the policing part of the council tax precept. It is no secret it’s been a tough financial year, and it is not easy for me to come to you, the people of Dorset, and ask for your continued support. But we do need your help and your contribution to keep Dorset one of the safest places in the country to live and work.
Please fill in our survey; I place great emphasis on ensuring your views help shape the future of policing in our county.

I want to assure you that I will be relentless in my fight to ensure Dorset is the safest county. So much good work has taken place this year, but I am not complacent. I know more needs to be done. Through continued lobbying for a fairer funding deal, fighting violent crime and high harm and putting victims and communities first, there will be no let-up.

I wish you all a safe and happy festive season. Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.



David Sidwick
Dorset Police and Crime Commissioner




Message Sent By:
Dorset Police & Crime Commissioner



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Shoplifting - a retailer's perspective

Business crime is not a victimless offence. I know how much it can impact hardworking business owners and retail staff across Dorset and I want to assure you I take these incidents very seriously. Whether it’s shoplifting, anti-social behaviour, cyber-crime and fraud, commercial burglary, or violence against shop workers, I am firmly committed to tackling these offences, and keeping retail workers safe. I have made tackling these offences a feature of my Police and Crime Plan, commissioning my office to set-up the Dorset Safer Business Partnership (DSBP) to work with businesses, partners, and the police to develop strategies to deal with business crime.

I have also been pleased to see Dorset Police’s ‘Safer Christmas’ campaign focusing on business crime. With advice for retailers and shoppers alike, the campaign links in with Op Shopkeeper which targets prolific shoplifters who cause the most harm in our communities through theft. I fully support the force when they say people who perpetrate business crime can expect to be dealt with robustly. To echo their key message, Dorset is indeed open for business, but closed for crime.

Since I became your Police and Crime Commissioner, I have been out across the county speaking to business owners, representatives, and staff about these issues. I understand how damaging offences like shoplifting and abuse towards retail workers can be on you and your teams and, in turn, your livelihoods. Today, I would like to hand over my newsletter to Adam Vincent, from independent Stalbridge supermarket, Dike & Son, to talk about their experiences with shoplifting and how they’re tackling it.

“The situation has changed significantly over the past few years. It’s gone from one extreme to another. During Covid, shoplifting was at an all-time low. As well as the fact that fewer people were shopping in person, we had someone on the front door monitoring numbers in the shop and therefore there was less opportunity to steal.

“People were also not struggling with the cost-of-living crisis at that point either. Now, with the cost of mortgages, rents, bills and indeed essentials like food and fuel rocketing up, things are much different. As retailers, we’re suffering because of the higher prices – but also getting hit on the other side as a result.

“When it comes to your typical shoplifter, it’s not always the stereotypes you see in the media who are fuelling this rise in shoplifting, it’s others as well. Yes, the high value items like meat and alcohol are obvious targets, but we’re also seeing other people who you wouldn’t suspect at all. For example, recently we had someone come in very smartly dressed and steal some Mr Kipling slices. She took them from the box and dropped them in her bag. All in all, those items would have added up to £10. I am aware people are struggling and food banks are overrun, but this lady was driving a car newer than mine, wearing designer labels. The cost-of-living crisis has hit us all, but I think some people don’t want to have to tighten their belts despite all of us feeling the pinch, and in turn that leads to more of this sort of behaviour.

“This ties in with some of the other items we’re seeing stolen as well. It’s not just essentials but things like Brita water filters for example. They’re £20 a packet. It all supports what we’re seeing that there isn’t a stereotypical shoplifter anymore, certainly not here anyway.

“The rise in shoplifting incidents does have an impact on us. Not just on our finances but our staff. We’re a family business which has been running for more than 170 years and people don’t realise there are 85 people whose jobs rely on us. The rise in this type of crime does put more pressure on us. It has a massive impact on feeling safe at work but also the inconvenience these incidents cause to the everyday lives of our staff.

“In an effort to mitigate against shoplifting, we have more than 100 CCTV cameras which are monitored, as well as tagging systems and hidden security tags. We’ve got quite inventive over the years. And we’re now looking at other measures as well to boost our security.

“We do challenge perpetrators in store if we’re aware of it happening. I know a lot of places don’t and we don’t want to put our staff at risk, but we are in a unique position where the owners, the directors and the store manager who all feel passionately about the business are on site and want to stop this happening. There are occasions where we’re building up evidence and won’t challenge though. None of our staff are under any pressure to challenge and can always flag to a colleague instead.

“The police have only got so much time and so much resource, so we need to make it as easy as possible for them to help us. As retailers, we need to do everything we can as well. It’s in our own interests. If the police are not aware of a problem, or a growing trend, then they can’t do anything about it. If we say, ‘What’s the point?’ that’s not going to solve this. A solution won’t be immediate, but we need to show up for the police, in order for them to do the same for us.”

Thanks to Adam for his description of the challenges retailers are facing daily. As part of the Government’s recent Retail Crime Action Plan, a commitment has been made to prioritise attending shoplifting incidences involving violence against a shopworker, as well as where security guards have detained an offender or where attendance is needed to secure evidence. As part of this plan, police forces have also reaffirmed their pledge to follow-up on evidence that could reasonably lead to catching a perpetrator.

I welcome this plan, and locally, have recently supported businesses through my Business Crime Community Fund, giving grants to BIDs for up to £5,000 for initiatives to reduce business crime and abuse against shop workers. I take the responsibility of protecting businesses and the people who work for them very seriously and would urge everyone – from organisations to individuals - to work together as these issues can’t be solved through policing alone.


David Sidwick
Dorset Police and Crime Commissioner




Message Sent By:
Dorset Police & Crime Commissioner



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Domestic abuse survivor visits Force as part of training initiative

A domestic abuse and stalking survivor who was held hostage at gunpoint by her former partner in Wales visited Dorset to speak about her lived experience.


Rhianon Bragg delivered a hard-hitting input to officers and staff from the Force’s Firearms Licensing Team and Adult Safeguarding Hub as part of her personal mission to bring positive change and help other victims who may not be able to speak out.

View full article here: https://news.dorset.police.uk/news-article/ecd7655f-04a0-ee11-9d5e-6045bdd24049

If you have been the victim of domestic abuse, stalking, harassment or controlling and coercive behaviour, you can find out details on how to report and the support that is available by visiting: https://www.dorset.police.uk/advice/advice-and-information/daa/domestic-abuse/




Message Sent By:
Julie Heath
(Dorset Police, Neighbourhood Alert Officer, Dorset)



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Have a safe and Merry Christmas

Step up, Step in and STOP harassment and abuse of women and girls


With the festive season in full swing, Dorset Police has issued advice to everyone who is out and about in the run up to Christmas to do what they can to keep themselves and everyone else safe. The force will also be actively keeping an eye out for sexually aggressive behaviour.

View full article here: https://news.dorset.police.uk/news-article/46b43a93-01a0-ee11-9d5e-6045bdd24049

If you see someone being harassed or abused, step in if it’s safe to do so, or tell someone. And if you or anyone is in immediate danger, don’t hesitate to call 999. Dorset Police will be here for you this Christmas. Find out more by following this link: https://enough.campaign.gov.uk/help-stop-it

Have a great time.





Message Sent By:
Julie Heath
(Dorset Police, Neighbourhood Alert Officer, Dorset)




December 21, 2023


Family Passwords To Stop Whats App Fraud



Beware WhatsApp messages supposedly from your family members saying they have lost or damaged their phone, so please send money quickly!!


This Christmas, set up a family password so that you know that it is genuine if one of you needs help. Make it 3 words that you will all remember. Make it unique and not information already on your social media, such as a pet's name. Make it fun like the snow family in the picture.



Message Sent By:
Damian Cranny
(Dorset Police, Fraud Protect Officer, Dorset)




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BLOG: Chief Constable Amanda Pearson reflects on the past 12 months of policing


As we approach the end of 2023, I wanted to reflect on the fantastic work of our 3,071 officers, staff and volunteers in delivering a safer Dorset over the past 12 months.

I’ve now spent nine months as Dorset’s Chief Constable, and having brought up my family here, I was honoured to join this organisation and lead such an incredible set of people.

View full article here: https://news.dorset.police.uk/news-article/01f61913-899e-ee11-9d5e-6045bdd24049

I wish our people and our communities a very Happy Christmas and a prosperous New Year.


Chief Constable Amanda Pearson
Dorset Police




Message Sent By:
Julie Heath
(Dorset Police, Neighbourhood Alert Officer, Dorset)




December 19, 2023


Top tips for staying safe and secure this Christmas

In this week’s newsletter, I’m handing over to two of Dorset Police’s experts on crime prevention and acquisitive crime for some advice on how to keep ourselves safe this Christmas. Thanks to Detective Superintendent Steve May for introducing the top tips from Crime Prevention and Design Advisor Claire Davis.

This Christmas we want to urge the residents of Dorset take some simple prevention measures to make it harder for thieves and other offenders. While Dorset is one of the safest places in the country to live, we must remember to look after ourselves and our possessions throughout the festive period as we often see an increase in theft and burglary throughout this time of year. Across the nation, police are seeing increases in the levels of reported theft, which includes home burglary, thefts of vehicles and break-ins to sheds and garages. I would urge you to please remember that the gifts you are looking forward to giving and receiving are equally as attractive to thieves and they can be on the lookout for opportunities to take them away and ruin your Christmas. Crime prevention is often down to small and sensible measures that we can all take to make sure that Christmas remains a time of celebration and good cheer. Whether it’s making sure your car is locked and secure or keeping that box from the present you’ve just wrapped out of sight until bin day, there’s plenty of simple prevention measures you can take to ensure you don’t become a victim of crime, not just this Christmas, but throughout the year.

At home:

Keeping doors and windows locked is key. At this time of year, we know that historically incidences of burglaries do rise, and we would urge people to adhere to basic security measures at the very least. This can be simple things such as locking doors and windows, even when you’re inside, being vigilant, keeping gardens cut back so you have good visibility so that you, and others are able to maintain good natural surveillance of your property.

Around Christmas, keep your wrapped presents out of sight, don’t put boxes for big items in your recycling bin until day of collection and be careful about what you’re leaving outside the front of your home. Always make sure you’ve locked your car as well. We’ve all rushed inside, hands full of bags, or dealing with children and forgotten, but it’s a simple thing to prevent theft.

Don’t forget your sheds and garages either. Lock your bikes and other valuable items up inside, especially if they are Christmas presents – nobody wants those tears on Christmas Day. Shed locks and alarms are also good deterrents. I would recommend people take a look at either the
Dorset Police website or the Secured by Design page and the
Sold Secure - Security Products. This will give you some really good tips – but also a chance to view the ‘Police Preferred’ products we would recommend, ranging from vehicle security to rural crime prevention products.

Out and about:

It’s not just at Christmas we need to follow this advice, but it’s well worth remembering for the festive season, when we tend to venture out more. It’s a sociable time and this means a lot of celebrating and parties, but we still want people to stay safe. We would urge people to plan ahead and organise a taxi or safe lift home before you go out. It is also important to look out for each other and tell a friend or family of your plans. Be alert and aware and keep your drink with you. Download the Hollie Guard app or take a personal attack alarm with you and ensure your phone is fully charged or you have a power bank for recharging. The Suzy Lamplugh Trust has some excellent advice as well, not just about personal safety while out but on topics including lone working and advice for safety at home too.”



Thanks to Claire and Steve for their valuable advice. I am committed to driving down crime and ensuring Dorset is the safest county, and we can all play our part in achieving this. Through small but key measures, we can hopefully have a happy, safe, and secure Christmas.


David Sidwick
Dorset Police and Crime Commissioner





Message Sent By:
Dorset Police & Crime Commissioner



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PCC asks for £1.08 a month to ensure continuous investment in policing for Dorset

Typically, just over half of Dorset Police’s total budget comes from central Government with the majority of the remainder raised through council tax contributions, known as the policing precept.

Last year, there was strong support for the precept proposal, and I know that’s because the people of Dorset understand how important their contribution is. As we all know it’s been a tough financial year and I find it incredibly difficult to come to you and say that policing still needs your support, it needs your contribution.

It comes as no surprise that inflation, which has been running in the region of 10% for a large part of the year and is still around 5%, means that ‘the same’ costs more than it did last year. Put simply, there is a need for more to maintain a ‘stand still’ point.

Over the last year, I have taken our funding concerns to government. I want a better, fairer deal for Dorset and I have lobbied for ‘seasonality and sparsity’ – how busy the police are, especially over the summer and the size and rurality of the county to be taken into consideration when funding is considered by the government. I hope to see some consideration and some form of ‘levelling-up’ associated with this new consideration, but the results of the lobbying effort will take time to materialise.

Many other forces receive significantly more funding than Dorset, and to give you a comparison from other areas across the country, the West Midlands force is approximately 80% funded by government. Dorset then has to deal with the significant ‘seasonality’ of policing demand that affects our county - with almost 13 million people taking a day trip or 1.8 million people coming to stay for a holiday.

This year, the government have set a £13 limit on the policing part of the council tax precept. With inflation being high, that £13 is equivalent to an increase in line with inflation and will not enable the level of service improvement that the public, the Chief Constable, and I want to see. Put simply, and this view is being echoed up and down the country by police leaders, this settlement is short of what forces require to progress and improve the service and ultimately difficult financial decisions will need to be taken.

My survey, which invites you to have your say on the policing part of the precept also puts to you the proposal of paying an increased amount. Although the government have set limits, I would like to know if there is support for more funding for policing and the survey suggests amounts that would broadly be in line with inflation and the police pay award this year, an £20 increase. There is also a suggestion of £30 which may sound like a lot of money, but in fact it is the amount that the Force really ‘needs’ to invest in the future, deliver efficiencies and provide service improvements into the future.

I will leave that consideration for you to make and as you do so, I would ask that you also consider the part you have played in policing over the last year and how you have helped me make a difference – just by taking part in the surveys I send out.

The people who completed my annual survey over the summer and last year’s precept survey have helped guide investments and so enabled the recruitment of 174 more police officers for Dorset.

Support was also voiced for the continuation of vital policing operations such as Operation Scorpion and Operation Viper to tackle illegal drugs and county lines, and for acting against knife crime and so I have funded knife wands for every police car across the county and the force now have a portable knife arch to utilise as part of ongoing intelligence led ‘hot spot’ policing.

Dorset remains one of the safest places. It is 2nd highest in the country for Rape and Serious Sexual Offences prosecutions and has had the 2nd lowest number of knife-crimes in the country this year.

My office has also brought in almost £1 million of additional grant funding from central government to tackle issues under the violence against women and girls agenda to bring in new initiatives to help tackle the priorities that were set by you back in 2021, when I became Commissioner.

Dorset has seen 3 police station front-desks re-open under a pilot project and 72 Police Community Contact Points have ‘popped-up’ across the county – where you can go along and meet your local officers, discuss any issues, and concerns you may have and get the help and advice you need.

Over the last year there has been a 13% reduction in ASB via various police operations including Op. Relentless, Op. Nightjar and Op. Fireglow and there have been a range of rural crime initiatives, including the introduction of the Rural Mounted Volunteers where volunteers on horseback work with the Dorset Police Rural Crime Team, providing intelligence and information to support and protect local rural communities. I am also delighted to say that Dorset’s Rural Crime team, as well as delivering by reducing rural crime across the count, won a national award this year for tackling acquisitive crime.

Throughout all this work, and throughout my tenure as Commissioner, my priority remains to provide the Chief Constable with the resources she needs to continue the good work that is already happening across the county and I have sought reassurance from the Chief that the delivery of the Police and Crime Plan will be maintained, despite the upcoming financial challenges.

As the Police and Crime Commissioner, I place great emphasis on my responsibility to ensure that your views help shape the future of policing in our county. This survey is vitally important, and the results will have an impact on every local resident and business in Dorset. I will use the information shared through this process to set the policing element of council tax precept for 2024/25 and assist with deciding how best to spend our budgets.

The survey should take about the same time to complete as it would to enjoy a cup of tea or coffee and has the potential to make Dorset a safer place for us all. So, thank you for taking the time to add your views and please share the survey with friends, family, and work colleagues so that we can get the greatest possible involvement from residents.


Please click on this link and give me your opinion - https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/Precept24DorsetAlert


David Sidwick
Dorset Police and Crime Commissioner






Message Sent By:
Dorset Police & Crime Commissioner




December 17, 2023


Garage Breaks in Christchurch

There has been an increase in shed and garage break-in the Walkford and Highcliffe areas.


A turquoise or green hatchback car was seen by an occupant of an address, loading items from his garage into the boot. At least two males were involved. No registration was obtained due to it being dark and it happening very quickly.

Officers are urging the public to remain vigilant and if possible take extra precautions to safeguard their sheds and garages.


Members of the public may wish to:

• Attach a secondary lock to the base of the garage

• Alarm the outer building; this can be done with a single alarm or it can be linked to the main house alarm if you have one

• Do not leave tools and ladders out to potentially assist offenders

• Place bins behind locked gates or secure them to a fixed point using a chain and padlock

• Use curtains, blinds or one-way window film on shed or garage windows to make sure criminals cannot see what is inside

• Don’t post pictures on social media of your bike, or your routes on fitness trackers/apps that show your start/finish point as offenders may be able to determine the home address of where your bike is stored

• Forensically mark and register your bikes, tools or other expensive items using an accredited forensic marking solution

• Consider additional security such as home CCTV systems and alarms.


For more information on how to keep your sheds and outbuildings secure, please click this link:

https://www.dorset.police.uk/cp/crime-prevention/protect-home-crime/secure-shed-garage/

We would encourage members of the public who witness any suspicious behaviour to report it to Dorset Police at www.dorset.police.uk or by calling 101. Alternatively, independent charity Crimestoppers can be contacted anonymously online at Crimestoppers-uk.org or by calling Freephone 0800 555 111.

Please do not use Dorset Alert to report a crime or something else that requires urgent police attention as we are unable to log details via this system. You should call 999 if you or someone else is in immediate danger.




Message Sent By:
Damian Cranny
(Dorset Police, Fraud Protect Officer, Dorset)



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Force launches campaign to tackle violent crime this Christmas and New Year


Dorset Police is reminding people to take care of themselves, their friends and family while celebrating the festive period in its latest drive to tackle violent crime.


Officers will be carrying out enhanced patrols in towns across the county in a bid to help keep people safe.

In Bournemouth, high-visibility patrols will be taking place ahead of Christmas and New Year’s Eve as part of Operation Snowglow and Operation Nightjar to tackle violence and anti-social behaviour linked to the night-time economy. Officers from the Bournemouth Town Team will also be on patrol, supported by BCP Council’s CSAS team.

In the west of the county, response officers will be assisted by the Force Support Group on peak celebration days to carry out proactive preventative patrols in the main town centres, including Weymouth, Dorchester and Bridport.

Officers from Weymouth Neighbourhood Policing Team, supported by the Special Constabulary, will also be providing enhanced patrols during the party season, including dedicated operations to identify and disrupt predatory behaviour. These will be replicated in Bournemouth.

The Force is this year supporting a new national winter Walk Away campaign, which aims to prevent deaths and serious injuries caused by someone being assaulted on a night out, often as a result of drunken behaviour, or split-second errors of judgement.

Men aged 18 to 30 are most likely to be a victim or suspect of such behaviour and the initiative calls on friends and bystanders of potential offenders, as well as members of the public, to de-escalate situations when it’s safe to.


View full article here: https://news.dorset.police.uk/news-article/b8894386-339b-ee11-9d5e-6045bdd24049


You can find more tips about dealing with a violent situation by visiting https://www.dorset.police.uk/cp/crime-prevention/personal-safety-how-to-stay-safe/respond-violent-situation/ or the national Walk Away campaign: https://wewalkaway.uk/.



Message Sent By:
Julie Heath
(Dorset Police, Neighbourhood Alert Officer, Dorset)



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Fraud investigation in relation to property management firm in the BCP area – arrest update


An investigation was launched following a number of reports received in relation to Initiative Property Management Limited, which mainly operates in the Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole areas.

Following detailed enquiries, a Bournemouth man aged in his 30s has been arrested on suspicion of fraud by abuse of position, carrying on the business of a company with the intent to defraud creditors or for another fraudulent purpose as well as an offence of entering into or being concerned in the acquisition, retention, use or control of criminal property and an offence of concealing, disguising, converting, transferring or removing criminal property.

A woman aged in her 60s from Bournemouth has also been arrested on suspicion of entering into or being concerned in the acquisition, retention, use or control of criminal property.

They have both been released under investigation as the Economic Crime Unit continues to carry out enquiries.


Anyone with information relating to this matter is asked to contact Dorset Police at www.dorset.police.uk, quoting Operation Interest or occurrence number 55230141924. Alternatively, independent charity Crimestoppers can be contacted anonymously online at Crimestoppers-uk.org or by calling Freephone 0800 555 111.





Message Sent By:
Julie Heath
(Dorset Police, Neighbourhood Alert Officer, Dorset)




December 12, 2023


Stalking - the signs and how victims are supported in Dorset

Stalking is a very serious problem, which can have a devastating effect on victims. I want to assure you I am absolutely committed to tackling this harmful offence as part of my Police and Crime Plan. Supporting victims is at the heart of this priority, and ensuring their voice is heard is key. As a candidate I met Sam Bumford who had had a horrible experience of being stalked and I was determined to make a difference.

As well as Dorset Police using Stalking Protection Orders alongside other effective intervention measures, my office also financially supports the Independent Stalking Advocacy Caseworker service, provided by You Trust/Paragon. And I have also commissioned Victim Support, whose ongoing work supports victims of all crimes in Dorset including stalking.

Today, I am pleased to hand over my newsletter to Detective Chief Superintendent Lindsay Dudfield who is the lead officer for stalking in Dorset Police. She will tell us about the work the force is doing to tackle this crime, and some exciting news about a new product which is set to launch soon in a bid to raise awareness of stalking behaviours.

“The impact stalking can have on victims is devastating and, in many cases, long-lasting. I want to assure all victims that it is a priority for us to safeguard them and ensure perpetrators are brought to justice. As the strategic lead on stalking, I work within the force to improve investigative standards and to increase awareness of what is involved in stalking, and what the indicators are in order to get the right outcomes for victims.

Stalking is one of those crimes where it is not always easy to identify. It’s very challenging. We’re determined to ensure that when victims contact us, stalking is recognised by those at first contact – from the control room and beyond. It is still the case that the majority of stalking cases are domestic-related, which means the offender is known to the victim. That’s not to say there aren’t cases of stranger stalking, but they are nowhere near as prevalent.

Due to the often-complex nature of this offence, sometimes we find that victims do not want a criminal justice outcome, they just want the stalking to stop. This is where it is so important to be listening to the victim and focused on what they want. There can be a range of complex reasons for them not wanting to proceed down this path. We do not underestimate the importance of listening and ensuring the victim is properly signposted and has access to the right support, while of course respecting their decision not to proceed through the criminal justice process.

There are a wide range of safeguarding interventions and tools we can use to protect victims, including Community Orders, Domestic Violence Protection Orders and Stalking Protection Orders. And even when there is insufficient evidence in an investigation to proceed down the criminal justice path, there are still mechanisms and safeguarding measures we can put in place.

We also work closely with external partners and support services including the Dorset Stalking Clinic to safeguard victims and prevent victimisation. This enables a co-ordinated approach from core agencies to share full information and enable robust risk assessments to ensure all safeguarding is followed. The process also ensures the victims voice is heard and allows positive engagement with crime prevention. In Dorset, the Police and Crime Commissioner has also financially committed to supporting the Independent Stalking Advocacy Caseworker (ISAC) service provided by You Trust/Paragon. This is an important role which delivers support to victims of stalking through guiding them through the criminal justice system and providing advice and guidance.

Dorset Police will also be launching a new film and campaign, which has been successful in Gloucestershire in tackling stalking and raising awareness of behaviours which can be misconstrued as romantic but in reality are unacceptable. The short film works around the pneumonic of FOUR - Fixated, Obsessed, Unwanted and Repeated. The campaign centres around a short film, capturing why society needs to stop pretending it is romantic to display the FOUR behaviours. Campaigns like this are so important to tackling this offence as we know when incidents are being reported to us, the behaviours demonstrated in this film may not always seem out of order to victims, but they know something isn’t right. Often, they will minimise what’s been happening, saying there is no violence. But there does not need to be violence in order for this offence to be serious. The aim of the campaign is to help them and others pinpoint that these behaviours are unacceptable. We know they can be a pre-cursor to much more serious offences and we want to help more people recognise it for themselves to prevent this from happening.

If you’ve been a victim of stalking, I want to encourage you to come forward and contact the police. We are here to help and have officers trained to support you. You don’t have to put up with persistent and unwanted attention. If that behaviour if making you fearful or anxious, please get in touch online or via 101. And always remember in an emergency to contact 999.”

I would like to reiterate this important message and urge victims to come forward and seek help. I am intent on making sure as many people as possible know about stalking, the signs, how it affects people and of course where to get support. Our officers are trained to help you and I would encourage you to have the confidence to contact either the police,
Victim Support Dorset or the National Stalking Helpline. I want to reassure you; you will be listened to. I am determined the voices of victims will be heard in my fight to make Dorset the safest county.



David Sidwick
Dorset Police and Crime Commissioner




Message Sent By:
Dorset Police & Crime Commissioner



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Winter vigilance patrols in Dorset

Officers from a variety of policing teams are out and about this season patrolling many areas with increased public footfall to enable everyone to enjoy the festive times across the county.


Neighbourhood policing teams, officers from the Operations command – such as firearms officers and dog handlers with their four-legged colleagues – as well as other specialist teams will be patrolling in crowded areas to provide reassurance to the public.

Chief Inspector Darren Harris, of Dorset Police, said: “As part of our policing activities throughout the season, we will be visibly patrolling in many areas where hopefully a lot of residents and visitors are enjoying what Dorset has to offer during this festive period.

“People may also see our firearms officers being on foot patrol, which means they may be carrying their long-arm weapons. There is absolutely no suggestion that there is any increased risk to our county or any specific events. This way of patrolling just gives them a greater flexibility to respond to incidents.

“During our high-visibility patrols we are also assisted by our council colleagues, including CSAS officers (community safety accreditation scheme). We very much hope that everyone is able to enjoy the festive season – our officers are here to deal with anyone seeking to cause disruption.

“For example, anyone acting anti-socially in our communities will be dealt with as we recognise this is closely linked to how safe people feel. We want to give reassurance that our officers are committed to keeping our county safe.


“Please approach them if you have any concerns or something doesn’t feel right. Everyone can play their part and look out for each other – trust your instincts.”





Message Sent By:
Julie Heath
(Dorset Police, Neighbourhood Alert Officer, Dorset)



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Meet your local CSAS Officer

Come along and meet your local CSAS (Community Safety Accredited Officer) officer - Jennifer Maidment - to discuss any safety concerns you may have.


To be at:

Waitrose store in Christchurch (by the instore cafe)

Wednesday, 13th December, 2023

4pm = 6pm


Jennifer has been based in Christchurch for some months now and you may have seen her patrolling the town centre.





Message Sent By:
Alyson Moore
(Dorset Police & NHWN, Resilient Community Co-ordinator, Bournemouth, Christchurch & Poole)




December 7, 2023


Putting victims at the heart of policing

For this newsletter, I would like to handover to Becky Chaplain, area manager for Victim Support across Dorset, Hampshire, and the Isle of Wight. Within her role at Victim Support, a service my office commission in Dorset, Becky has also joined our new VAWG (Violence Against Women and Girls) Improvement Panel, bringing a wealth of experience to the table in a bid to provide vital learning opportunities and feedback for Dorset Police.

The Panel will be reviewing the work of Dorset Police’s VAWG agenda, helping my office to scrutinise the work of the force. They will help to ensure Dorset Police deliver the most effective and compassionate service for victims of VAWG-related incidents, through reviewing samples of police contacts with VAWG victims. The panel will then provide feedback to ensure learning takes place and best practice is implemented.

In this blog, Becky will detail the importance of putting victims at the heart of criminal justice and has a vital message for women and girls during the global 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-based Violence.

"At Victim Support we offer tailored 1-2-1 support led by the needs of each victim who has been affected by crime. We support victims of all crimes, including gender-based offences like violence, sexual assault, and harassment. Our core value is to be the voice of the victim. We are on their side.

If victims don’t feel part of the justice process, it goes without saying they’re not going to feel like the process works for them. But really, they should be at the heart of everything. That is why an initiative like the VAWG Improvement Panel will go some way towards helping people to understand what’s important to victims, as well as what needs to be considered when dealing with them. I’m pleased to see the PCC pushing this focus, it’s a step in the right direction.

One thing I hope the VAWG Improvement Panel will help to bring about is meaningful change. Feedback to all parties involved will be key, but from the perspective of victims, it will help them to feel their voices have been heard. That’s one of the things we know victims really struggle with, feeling like they don’t have a voice in the justice process.

The VAWG Improvement Panel looks at policing practices to ensure they are considering the needs of victims in their decision making. The meetings offer a chance to review calls and will provide an opportunity for expert voices from the sector to inform practice with the police. It will allow us to look at issues in more depth and feedback what works and what doesn’t.

The key component with any VAWG offence is that fear of not believed. Sadly, that’s often compounded by some of the people that victims deal with within the justice process. This impact is felt further if criminal charges are not taken forward or proper information not passed onto the victim about why this is. That’s why during this campaign for 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-based Violence, I would like to reiterate to any victims that they can talk to us confidentially and independently of the police. And I would reassure them they will be believed. No-one at Victim Support is here to judge you or question your story, you can tell us in confidence what has happened to you, and we’ll try and work with you to find ways to help you cope and move on.

We’re always on the side of victims. When they feel they’re not supported by the justice system, or targeted on social media or otherwise, we’re always there for them. We know the amount of people we reach just scratches the surface. There are so many people who haven’t found a way to breakthrough. So, please if you need help, just get in touch. We’re here for you."


Thank you to Becky for highlighting the importance of putting victims at the heart of policing. Since I came to office, I have pledged to tackle violence against women and girls as part of my Police and Crime Plan priority to fight violent crime and high harm. This includes ensuring that victims of rape and serious sexual assaults are provided with the care and support they need, but also that all victims have the confidence to report these crimes to the police. I am determined to ensure that victims are at the centre of policing in Dorset and are given the support that works best for them.

David Sidwick
Dorset Police and Crime Commissioner




Message Sent By:
Dorset Police & Crime Commissioner



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Protecting women and girls in Dorset from violence

In this newsletter, as part of my focus on the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-based Violence, Superintendent Emma Sweetzer from Dorset Police, will tell us what her role as VAWG (Violence Against Women and Girls) lead involves, and how the force is dealing with these offences and working with victims to ensure their voices are heard.

As the Police and Crime Commissioner, I know a whole system approach is needed towards tackling these deeply harmful crimes. Bringing together partners from across the board is the only way to create the societal changes needed to protect women and girls from violence.

Dorset Police’s strategy for tackling this violence is a crucial part of this approach and details the force’s commitment to making Dorset a safe place for all women and girls, while relentlessly pursuing the perpetrators of violence against them. Over to Superintendent Sweetzer to explain the work taking place.

“My role as VAWG lead oversees all the VAWG work within the force; from the response and action that we take against VAWG offences to identifying where we have areas of weakness and how we address them.

Dorset Police are tackling VAWG offences through three main pillars of work – Public Confidence and Trust, Relentless Pursuit of Perpetrators, and Safer Spaces. Each of these pillars has a lead officer and we have identified key areas of work we wish to progress going forward. The work formulates an action plan or order that we can track progress. The actions come from national priorities, others from within Dorset and some from reality testing victims’ journeys to ensure we have a strong voice representing them and their experiences.

In addition to the pillar work, we also have a firm focus on the three main VAWG crimes which affect our communities in Dorset – these are RASSO (Rape and Serious Sexual Offences), Domestic Abuse and Stalking. These are a priority in recognition of the harm they present to women and girls in Dorset today. We must ensure victims voices are heard and ensure we as the police are providing that vital service to our communities and are focused on these significant crime types.

My role involves challenging stereotypes and changing a culture from within the force out to the wider public. Police officers are important figures in our society, so we must ensure they have the best training, the best support, enabling them to give the best advice to our victims. The force action plan has enabled us to identify our areas of vulnerability ensuring they’re dealt with. This involves a lot of training – we’ve looked across the whole force and asked ourselves what we need to provide to our staff under each heading.

For example, the Domestic Abuse Matters training, rolled out a few years ago, has been refreshed repeated in 2020-21 to ensure all our officers are victim focused. We’ve also undertaken a whole raft of training in relation to our RASSO offences, ensuring the language we are using is correct and we’re not victim-blaming in any way. Another example of how we’re implementing change from within, is our commitment to the SSAIDP (Serious Sexual Assault Investigators Development Programme). Nationally out of the 2,000 officers required to have this training, Dorset’s quota was 23 - as a sign of how seriously we take these offences and our response to them, we’ve now had 154 of our people go through that training.

As part of a national operation - Operation Soteria Bluestone, which aims to improve the response of the police service to victims of rape & sexual offences and improve their experience of the criminal justice process, we have identified a need to improve training to our first responders. We must make sure we’re doing the right things from the very start. Of course, our specialist officers have expertise, but it’s about cascading that training to everyone, from control room staff to frontline officers, because when victims call us in their hour of need and we attend, we need to ensure they are supported and spoken to in the right way. It's about making sure that we do everything we can at that first point to keep victims engaged, ensuring we are listening to them and what they want us to do because sometimes a criminal justice outcome isn't always what they want. There may be other things can we put in place.

In addition to this we have put in place scrutiny panels where we actively look at how good an investigation has been and look at the victim’s journey. From the very beginning to the end, we’re examining to see if there are learning points. It’s about continuous development of our officers - if we feel that something hasn’t met the standard we expect, then feedback will be given and if necessary, further training provided.

We've also looked at ourselves as a force, from within, because we need to ensure our own staff have the confidence to come forward and the right mechanisms to report issues to our Professional Standards Department. This team has done a lot of work around producing a pledge in order that victims know what will be provided to them so that they feel fully supported. We want our staff to know what they can expect as part of the transparency we want to give all victims.

As for prevention, we’re looking at how do we stop our victims from becoming victims in the first place. This includes ensuring we can identify high harm perpetrators. There's been a lot of work ongoing using the Cambridge High Harm Index and work around identifying the offenders and then putting the necessary mechanisms and processes in place to manage them and divert their behaviour. We’re working with different agencies around cognitive behaviour therapy to change perpetrators offending behaviour as one aspect.

Regarding the Safer Spaces pillar, there's a lot of work going on with regards to the night-time economy. We’re all aware that sometimes there is a link between alcohol and people going out in the evening and then becoming a victim. We’re looking at the ways we make our night-time economy safe for people and stop that lone female, who might be vulnerable through drink, from being preyed on by an offender. We’re working with licensing and licensed premises on accreditation around responding to vulnerability, and in Weymouth we also have the Pineapple Project working on safe spaces, as well as the Ask Ani campaign the force is promoting to support victims of domestic abuse. The recent funding secured under the government’s Safer Street Scheme, focuses on the night-time economy, with schemes across Dorset set to benefit.

Going forward, our aims are to raise our investigation standards even further, increase our service to victims and ensure we understand what they’re saying to us. I want to victims to know we are here, and we will listen.”


Thanks to Superintendent Sweetzer for her coherent explanation of how Dorset Police is tackling violence against women and girls. To be clear, I recognise that one organisation alone cannot solve this issue. Our recent successful bid for almost £1million of Safer Streets Funding will be a key part of our fight to tackle these offences. The funding from Safer Streets will go towards projects across Dorset including a Women’s Night Safety Charter, where businesses will nominate a champion within their organisation to actively promote women’s night safety, as well as new CCTV cameras in some areas and the integration of cameras from rural areas into the Dorset Council main CCTV control room. There will also be a community guardianship intervention project to help students get back to their residence safely as well as other important projects.

It is only by working together, can we make progress towards the changes that are needed to ensure women and girls are free from fear from violence in Dorset.


David Sidwick
Dorset Police and Crime Commissioner






Message Sent By:
Dorset Police & Crime Commissioner



-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Fake Lloyds Pharmacy Emails

A phishing email campaign is currently targeting people with fake Lloyds Pharmacy emails. The emails falsely claim that by signing up for LloydsDirect you can easily manage prescriptions and get free delivery.

These emails contain links designed to steal personal/financial information or install malware. The fraudsters have made the emails appear more genuine by including LloydsDirect/NHS logos and Trustpilot reviews.

However, these emails are fake. Do not click any links, provide info, or sign up through these emails. Double check directly with your pharmacy if unsure.

To learn more and stay updated on related scams, visit the official Lloyds Pharmacy customer service page: Suspicious Email/Spam Email (lloydspharmacy.com) How to stay safe online Get Safe Online | The UK's leading Online Safety Advice Resource

Key protections:

• Verify pharmacy emails before clicking links or providing info

• Go directly to your pharmacy's website rather than through links

• Check for spelling/formatting issues indicating a potential fake

• Keep device security protections updated to block malware

Stay vigilant against pharmacy-themed phishing campaigns trying to steal personal information or distribute malware. Verify legitimacy through official channels before engaging.


Oh, an email from the pharmacy!
Free delivery, manage prescriptions, what could it be?
Clicks and links I shouldn't follow.
This message just rings hollow.

Logos may seem legit initial,
But something feels artificial,
Spelling errors, formatting too,
This email looks like a scam through and through!

Don't input info, don't click the link!
This phishing attempt makes me blink.
Verify everything's real,
Before you reveal or sign any deal.

Go directly to the source,
To avoid malware of course!
Check Lloyds Pharmacy's real site,
To keep your data locked up tight.

Stay vigilant of pharmacy fakes!
Security is what it takes.





Message Sent By:
Damian Cranny
(Dorset Police, Fraud Protect Officer, Dorset)





December 2, 2023


The devastating impact of knife crime

During Operation Sceptre recently which focused on action against knife crime, I met the mother of Tom Roberts, a 21-year-old man who died after being stabbed in Bournemouth in March 2022. Tom had been acting as a peacemaker in a fight between his friend and his killer when the attack took place in Old Christchurch Road. His killer was jailed for life earlier this year and will serve a minimum term of 29 years.

Tom’s courageous family have shown incredible strength and dignity, and now his mother, Dolores Roberts-Wallace is calling for more education to try and prevent further tragedies happening to other families.

I’d like you to read her words on the impact Tom’s death has taken on the family, and her commitment to knife crime prevention.

“When I got the call from the hospital on that morning, I remember feeling so numb. I was due to go to work when they called me. They said you have got to come now; your son has been stabbed. I remember feeling very calm but unable to process what was happening. It didn’t feel real. I remember thinking what are we doing here? Was he in a fight? I had so many thoughts running through my mind.

Tom’s death was like losing a part of myself. It’s been so hard for all of us. I have to take each day as it comes. We try to be brave every day; I always try and smile but I have a deeper pain.

Today I watched a video from the day Tom passed his driving test and came to collect me for a drive. He was only 18 then, his face was so happy, and I was so proud of him. He was such a cheeky boy, he loved his food, his roast dinners especially and he always said I was the best cook. He was a happy, polite boy and whenever he saw me, he always took the mickey out of me saying I’d shrunk. Everyone loved him, from primary school and up. He had a cheeky face and was popular with teachers and friends.

Tom worked full time for an engineering company and worked so hard. He’d been DJ-ing for a while but had said to me just before Christmas that he had signed up for the marines and was very busy doing his fitness training. He had everything ahead of him. Every day I look at his pictures and wonder what he would look like now. Before it happened we were planning a dinner with all the family as he was due to go on holiday the week after but we didn’t get around to it in the end. I wish I could have arranged it; I wish I could turn the clock back and do that for him.

As most of you know, what happened to my son should never have happened. So, I am once again campaigning for a safer Bournemouth by asking parents to educate their children about knife crime and the devastating consequences that it could, and most likely lead to. If I was to say anything to young people out there going down the wrong path, it would be that you are not alone, please ask for help. There are so many people out there to support you. Talk more and be engaged with your friends or whoever you are comfortable with. And parents and adults, talk to your young people, be connected, be ready to help. Don’t bottle it up, talk it out. You are not alone.

I believe knife crime education is essential for preventing violence and harm. Raising awareness, encouraging reporting, supporting victims, and routinely educating about the consequences is an absolute must. I believe there should be mandatory visits from anti-crime groups to schools, proper counselling needs to be available for kids with troubled backgrounds, more healthy outlets and after school activities to keep young people out of trouble and off the streets. Education needs to be seen and in front of kids, it must be personal. Not just on paper or read out, it must make an impact.”


Dorset has a low rate of knife crime, but while young people are still picking up knives thinking they are a form of protection, I will continue my campaign to drive down this offence. Education and early intervention is key, but as I’ve said before, the police cannot do this alone. We all need to play part our part to ensure no other families are destroyed by the impact of this crime. I will be relentless in my efforts to make Dorset the safest county.

David Sidwick
Dorset Police and Crime Commissioner




Message Sent By:
Dorset Police & Crime Commissioner




December 2, 2023


Beware Fake Job Adverts

Please be aware of fake job adverts going around offering opportunities to become a paid
movie reviewer. The fraudsters are using all types of social media such as Instagram, pretending to be a representative from a movie chain. They claim that they are looking for people to watch new release movies at home and write reviews in exchange for payment.

While it sounds fun and easy, it is too good to be true. These scams ask for your personal information under the guise of a "registration process" which they then use for identity theft or sell to other scammers.

They may also persuade you to make payments to unlock your earnings which you will never get. Remember, if a job sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Be very wary of anyone claiming you can make easy money watching movies, testing video games, mystery shopping, etc. These "dream job" ads are almost always scams. When in doubt, search online to see if the company is real and legitimate. And never give out your personal or banking information!


Oh I Wish That Job Was True
Oh I wish that job was true,
Getting paid to watch a movie or two!
Just write some reviews from my cosy old couch,
But beware there’s a catch that will make you go ouch!


The ad flashes, a smile on my face,
Finally luck has found its place!
I register quick, spots are filling fast,
Hand details over - done at last!


The call comes in, so official it seems,
My movie dream job, or so it gleams.
Pay upfront? Ah well, rules are rules!
Goodbye cash, I played the fool.


The truth sets in, it was a scam all the way,
No movie job coming my way.
These tricksters fooled me without even trying,
Dangle a dream job - and set traps lying.


Oh I wish that job was true,
No movies or money coming through.
I fell for promises wrapped in clover,
Should have known it was too good to be over!



Message Sent By:
Damian Cranny
(Dorset Police, Fraud Protect Officer, Dorset)



-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Free drinks for Lift Legends this Christmas


Dorset Police’s Lift Legend campaign will return this December, with 70 licensed premises set to offer free soft drinks to designated drivers over the festive period.


Drink and drug driving is one of the ‘fatal five’ causes of serious injuries and deaths on roads in South West England. Last winter, Dorset Police arrested 319 people for driving under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs.

In a bid to tackle drink and drug driving, Dorset Police has announced the return of its popular drink drive campaign, Lift Legend; an initiative that looks to reward designated drivers with free drinks as a ‘thank you’ for getting their friends, colleagues and family members get home safely.

Lift Legend will run from Friday 1 December 2023 until Monday 1 January 2024. Drivers buying a soft drink in one of the participating venues will receive a voucher to get their second drink free of charge.

View full article here: https://news.dorset.police.uk/news-article/00b1e93b-9a8f-ee11-9d5d-6045bdd24049

If you suspect someone has been drinking or has taken drugs and is about to drive, please dial 999 and provide the make and model of the vehicle, registration number and direction of travel.

For more information about the campaign or to find participating venues near you, visit: www.dorset.police.uk/LiftLegend




Message Sent By:
Julie Heath
(Dorset Police, Neighbourhood Alert Officer, Dorset)



-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Dorset is Open for Business, but Closed for Crime, say Police


Dorset Police is launching its seasonal campaign, called ‘Safer Christmas’. They want to remind people of the simple safety measures they can take to ensure they don’t become a victim of crime.

Superintendent Gavin House, the Neighbourhood, Partnership and Safeguarding lead said: “this is one of the busiest times of year for shoppers and retailers and there are simple prevention measures people can take to make it harder for thieves. We are urging retailers to think carefully about where they place their most valuable stock; to keep it away from doors and window displays and to place it where staff can best keep an eye on it. We are urging shoppers to be vigilant to people who may want to steal their wallets and other valuables from their bags, so keep them closed at all times, especially in crowds.”

The Force is also giving out helpful advice to shoppers when parking their vehicles, as people will often leave purchased gifts on display, making their vehicle an easy target for opportune thieves. “We are reminding drivers that when parking their vehicle to choose a well-lit spot, ensure their vehicle is locked and never leave any valuables or gifts on display” added Supt House.

Officers will be out and about in the run up to Christmas, and where possible, will attend shopping events and Christmas markets.

View full article here: https://news.dorset.police.uk/news-article/c9d169b8-2890-ee11-9d5d-6045bdd24049

For more information and to view the campaign posters visit: https://www.dorset.police.uk/safer-christmas





Message Sent By:
Julie Heath
(Dorset Police, Neighbourhood Alert Officer, Dorset)




November 30, 2023


How the Pineapple Project is supporting young women in Dorset

As the 16 Days of Activism against Gender-based Violence continues, I’m handing over this newsletter to the founders of the Pineapple Project in Weymouth. This scheme aims to safeguard young women in Weymouth when they’re outside of their family homes.

I’m pleased to say that thanks to the latest round of Safer Streets Funding, the Weymouth-based project will expand to other areas in the Dorset Council area, including Portland, Swanage and Dorchester allowing the organisation to ensure young women and girls are supported and feel safe going out in the area they live.

Here’s Rachel Janaway, targeted youth worker at Dorset Council, and Sarah Whilton, service manager at Dorset Council, to tell you more about the Pineapple Project:

“The heart of the Pineapple Project revolves around the concept of hidden girls. We know from listening to young women that incidences of sexual assault, exploitation and peer-on-peer abuse take place, but are not always reported, leaving these young women’s experiences hidden.

To try and combat that, through the Pineapple Project we’re using the principles of community guardianship to provide a safe haven for young women when things haven’t gone to plan. This ranges from youngsters being able to step into a local shop so they can charge a phone or somewhere which allows them to take a few minutes of shelter in an approved business putting some distance between them and the person who could be bothering them.

Our mantra is that all young women should feel safe in their communities and be given the opportunity to understand their right to safety and be able to seek support when it is needed. The origins of this project really come back to the slogan that it takes a village to raise a child. We want the Pineapple Project to empower young women, and the community to be involved in what’s happening out there. We want the community to own this. So often we don’t know about exploitation until after it’s happened, and we need to change that. We want this project to help get in there before this stage and change it before it’s too late.

As an organisation, we provide training and a toolkit for the people who take part. This includes how to recognise signs which could mean a young woman is at risk of harm and knowing how best to offer help. We DBS check everyone involved, and they also have access to a professional duty line. Essentially, we’re training people to be active bystanders. This is how we differ from a scheme like Ask for Angela or Ask for Ani. We want people in the community to be proactive and start seeing young women through a safeguarding lens.

There is no blueprint for this project. We’re constantly adapting, learning as we go and ensuring that the safe space is just that, by having a community guardian who’s a safe person. Now, thanks to the recent funding from Safer Streets, this will enable us to get the appropriate adults into the scheme and develop this further. We always say that innovation is not linear. This type of project is complex because of the issues involved but we’re committed to making a change.

We’d love for people who want to join us to already be in the community, talking and working with young people. They’re the ones who are hearing the conversations and listening to what’s happening already. We’d also love to get young women involved and build that trust and support between them, create peer mentors and champions in schools.

Our community guardians are the eyes and ears of their local area. We want them to challenge, observe and protect our young women whenever they need it. The support they give could range from offering a safe haven, challenging inappropriate behaviour, signposting young women to appropriate services, providing a distraction or diversion and reporting safeguarding concerns or a crime.

Ultimately, the Pineapple Project centres around listening to the voices of young women and aims to protect them from harm by showing there are responsible people who care. We want to empower young women to feel in control of the support available to them.”


Thank you to Rachel and Sarah for their ongoing hard work, and I look forward to seeing how the Pineapple Project continues to develop in Dorset. Protecting women and girls forms a key part of my Police and Crime Plan to fight violent crime and high harm. I am dedicated to continue working with police and external partners to counter violence against women and girls by making our public spaces safer. Through working with organisations like the Pineapple Project, we can help make Dorset the safest county.

Get in touch with the Pineapple Project here


David Sidwick
Dorset Police and Crime Commissioner




Message Sent By:
Dorset Police & Crime Commissioner




November 27, 2023


White Ribbon Day and 16 Days of activism against gender based violence

Dorset Police and the Police and Crime Commissioner supported White Ribbon Day on 25 November which marked the International Day Against Violence Against Women, and are also supporting 16 Days of Activism against Gender Based Violence which started on the same day and runs until 10 December.


Violence and harassment disproportionally effects women and girls, there is help from police and partner agencies for everyone in our communities. Nobody should live in fear. If you have been a victim of violence or harassment please report it to Dorset Police via the Force website www.dorset.police.uk or call 101. If anyone is in immediate danger, always call 999.

Please follow our social media channels where you will see information from the Home Office “Enough” campaign which amongst other things provides a guide on how to call out or report unacceptable behaviour that can prevent women and girls being abused or harmed. There will be information on other public safety topics as well.

View full article here: https://news.dorset.police.uk/news-article/9d4b697f-2a8b-ee11-9d5d-6045bdd24049

White Ribbon is the UK’s leading charity engaging men and boys to end violence against women and girls. Everyone, especially men and boys, is encouraged to make the White Ribbon Promise to never use, excuse or remain silent about men’s violence against women. This year the charity’s theme is #ChangeTheStory, and you can find out more about White Ribbon UK at the website www.whiteribbon.org.uk

Pictured are Police and Crime Commissioner David Sidwick, Chief Constable Amanda Pearson, Assistant Chief Officer Jo Mosely, Chief Finance Officer Neil Butterworth, Assistant Chief Constable Neil Corrigan and Assistant Chief Constable Steve Lyne, along with Chief Superintendent Richard Bell and Assistant Chief Constable Mark Callaghan.



Message Sent By:
Julie Heath
(Dorset Police, Neighbourhood Alert Officer, Dorset)




November 25, 2023


Positive results following national crack down on knife crime


Dorset Police has taken part in Operation Sceptre, a national initiative to tackle knife crime.


Operation Sceptre ran from Monday 13 to Sunday 19 November 2023 and involved all 43 forces taking part in intensified efforts to crack down on knife-enabled crime and violence.

The themes for this phase of Sceptre were around online knife retailers and responsible selling, raising awareness to parents and care givers to ensure they are aware of what packages are being sent to young people at home and educating young people about the stark dangers of carrying weapons.

Presentations were delivered to schools across the county focusing on preventative education around themes such as the consequences and dangers of carrying weapons; common misconceptions around knife crime; and locations of knife surrender bins in Dorset where knives could be deposited anonymously.

Handheld metal detectors were distributed to teams across Dorset. These will now be in each operational vehicle across Dorset as a supportive tool to assist stop and search powers.


The Force is pleased to report the following results:

3,535 students in 19 schools received a knife crime presentation
28 knives removed from circulation, (including knives surrendered in knife bins and those seized)
14 arrests made for knife-related crime
8 weapons sweeps conducted
4 stop and searches
17 addresses visited
1 retailer visited
1 media event around the new knife wands


View full article here: https://news.dorset.police.uk/news-article/fd0554f6-b08a-ee11-9d5d-6045bdd24049

Parents can seek advice about their chilld’s welfare at: Parent Talk - Support for Parents from Action For Children

Retailers can visit this website for guidance on selling knives: nbcc.police.uk/knifeguidance





Message Sent By:
Julie Heath
(Dorset Police, Neighbourhood Alert Officer, Dorset)




November 24, 2023


Why Restorative Justice is crucial to ensure victims voices are heard

This week is Restorative Justice Week (Nov 19-25), an international campaign which aims to highlight the power of restorative justice and the organisations who work to facilitate this important process. I know restorative justice can provide the tools to help victims of crime deal with what’s happened to them, through a safe, mediated approach. In Dorset, my office commissioned the Restorative Justice Dorset service in May 2021. This service is delivered by Restorative Solutions and focuses on offences committed by adults – those aged 18 and over.

Therefore, this week I would like to hand over my newsletter to Jackie Willson, service delivery manager and restorative justice practitioner for Restorative Justice Dorset and Leila Pastecchia, service delivery assistant, to tell you about the service, and the difference it can make to people’s lives.

Jackie Willson: “One of the common misconceptions around restorative justice is that it is a soft option. I can assure you it is not. It does not replace a conviction or sentence through the criminal justice system, that is a myth. Participation in this process also doesn’t mean a softer sentence. The processes are separate and have no bearing on one another. In fact, what we actually find is offenders say restorative justice is much harder than appearing in court.

What restorative justice does do is bring people together where harm has been caused and look at ways to repair that harm and give victims a voice. To be informed about restorative justice is a victim’s right, under the victim’s code, and allows them to speak about what’s happened to them and how the impact of the crime has affected them.

Restorative justice can be used following any crime where there is a victim. From the most serious offences such as murder and harmful sexual behaviour, domestic abuse and assaults to crimes such as criminal damage, thefts, anti-social behaviour, and public order offences. What we do is risk assess the people, not the crimes. We ask if those involved are in the right place to do this, can we meet their expectations?

We often find that the criminal justice part of proceedings – conviction and sentencing – doesn’t always bring about the closure people feel it might do. It doesn’t make victims feel that it’s been sorted or dealt with. That’s where restorative justice comes in. It gives people a chance to sit down with someone, talk about it and say, ‘that wasn’t okay, and this is how it made me feel’. One of the other aspects we really encourage with restorative justice is reflection – how do you feel about it now? And that’s important not just for the victim but the person who inflicted the harm to think about as well. It gives them a chance to consider how they feel about what they did, which is important to deal with their guilt and shame.

What we do as part of each restorative justice process is very prepared. We meet with people, talk to them about their expectations. What do they need to say, what do they need to hear from the other person, but also what don’t they want to hear. The whole process is voluntary so it means people can really think about what they need from the other person. And that in turn enables us to manage expectations and possibly signpost people in different directions, if perhaps restorative justice isn’t going to be suitable for their needs. This process gives people a voice and can empower victims to take control and recover, which is where it differs from the criminal justice process which focuses on the evidence.

When I speak to victims who have gone through restorative justice – whether that’s face to face or through letters of apology - they say it helps them deal with the thing they can’t put away. They’re able to then have closure, the hangover from what happened has gone. Several victims say they don’t feel scared anymore, they’re not frightened. That person is not impacting their life anymore; this is especially true for victims of traumatic crimes. It helps them set important boundaries with their abuser for instance.

And for some victims, there is a sense of guilt as well. These conversations as part of restorative justice are healing for both parties. And that’s important. When I meet some of the offenders, particularly in prison, they’ve convinced themselves that they’re a bad person and the victim is going to shout at them and just be angry. That’s not what this is about, and by giving them a chance to say sorry, and talk about why and who has been affected, it helps them to feel better about themselves and go forward and make amends. My experience working with those that have caused harm is that they say facing the person they have harmed is the hardest thing they’ve done but the only thing they have done that they feel may have repaired some of that harm. The power of restorative justice is that it can provide that closure, that finality for victims and offenders to be able to move forward from the past.”

Leila Pastecchia: “Restorative justice is a very powerful process. I complete feedback surveys with those that have been through an indirect restorative process, where facilitators have shared written apologies with victims or shuttle communication where victims and offenders have not met face to face but have wanted to share information about what happened and how they feel about it. This is a popular form of restorative justice. Letters give the offender a chance to talk about why they did it and they prove to be a very transformative process for both victims and offenders.

For many of the offenders, they say it is a real milestone in their lives. It makes them stop and reflect and go on to get external help in some cases. So, while we know how important it is for the victims, it really helps those on the other side. Now, it’s just about getting the word out there that when the whole process is followed, it’s unbelievably positive. I’ve never dealt with anyone angry or upset by our service. I would urge people if they’re curious to come and find out more and get the facts about what we do.”

Restorative justice is a key part of my Police and Crime Plan priority to put victims and communities first. My thanks to Jackie and Leila for their compelling descriptions of the impact this process can have. I am in full support of the work being carried out by Restorative Justice Dorset. I want victims to be given the chance to have closure and be able to move on with their lives secure in the knowledge that offenders have understood the impact of their actions. This clearly is a separate and additional process to sentencing and is victim driven.

It is my mission to give victims the opportunity to have their voices heard, and I am proud of the work Restorative Justice Dorset is doing to help make Dorset the safest county.

You can find out more about the work of Restorative Justice Dorset here



David Sidwick
Dorset Police and Crime Commissioner




Message Sent By:
Dorset Police & Crime Commissioner



------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Tackling Violence Against Women and Girls in Dorset

I fully support White Ribbon Day on Saturday which marks the International Day Against Violence Against Women. This important date also signals the start of 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-based Violence which runs until December 10. This year, the global campaign is calling on people to show how much they care about ending violence against women and girls by sharing the actions they are taking to create a world free from violence towards women. As your Police and Crime Commissioner, it is an important time to reflect on the work taking place in Dorset to tackle these offences, as well a chance to highlight the services supporting victims of Violence Against Women and Girls (VAWG). Throughout this campaign, I will be handing over my newsletters to some special guests to tell you about the work they are doing to protect women and girls in Dorset.

I am fully committed to doing all I can to enable the police and our partners to robustly deal with these abhorrent crimes, while I also continue to support the vital services helping victims and those working to prevent incidents of harm across the county. There is no doubt that women and girls must be safe, and feel safe, whether on a night out or in their own homes.

A key part of my seven-year Police and Crime Plan is dedicated to tackling VAWG, domestic abuse, stalking and other high harms. I want to assure you that there is no room for complacency when it comes to these offences. Since I came to office in 2021, I have been determined to create an environment in Dorset where all residents and visitors feel safe from violence, intimidation, and harassment.

From Operation Focus, which targeted those who cause the most harm to women and girls, ensuring enhanced investigations to maximise the opportunities to achieve charges, to Op Soteria, a national collaboration in which Dorset was one of 14 forces working towards developing a new operating model for the investigation and prosecution of rape and serious sexual assault cases, I want to be clear; I will fight to ensure Dorset is at the forefront of change to ensure protection of women and girls.

Recently, my office has launched a VAWG Improvement Panel which will review the work of Dorset Police’s VAWG agenda, to drive improvements and ensure the force delivers the most compassionate service possible. It brings together representatives from the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner, as well as victim services and volunteers to carry out a review of police contact related to VAWG incidents. This could range from domestic abuse to harassment and sexual offences. From here, the panel will provide constructive and critical feedback to ensure learning across the organisation. It is key that if we are to tackle these crimes properly, we must ensure our own work is of the highest quality.

A few weeks ago, I was also delighted to receive the news that we had been successful in our bid to the Home Office for nearly £1million of Safer Street Funding. The county was awarded £964,055 to drive forward projects, many of which focus on the safety of women and girls in the night-time economy. This funding will go towards projects including a Women’s Night Safety Charter, where businesses will nominate a champion within their organisation to actively promote women’s night safety, as well as new CCTV cameras in some areas and the integration of cameras from rural areas into the Dorset Council main CCTV control room. The money will also fund two daytime CCTV officers to allow for 24/7 monitoring.

One aspect of the bid I would especially like to highlight are the projects which had a particular focus on changing attitudes and behaviours. From the Community Guardianship Intervention Project to help students get back to their residence safely, to the expansion of the Pineapple Project’s community guardians who help ensure young women and girls have support to feel safe when going out, these schemes are vital to ensuring women and girls can feel secure in our communities.

There is one point I do want to reiterate, however. And that is it is not up to women to continually find ways to ‘stay safe’. We need to push for change across our society and tackle the deep issues which lead to so many men committing crimes against women. Getting to the root of this behaviour is the only way we can deal with the issue of violence against women and girls for the sake of our future generations.

I assure you I will be relentless in my drive to protect women and girls. Working with agencies up and down the country, as well as here in Dorset, I will do all I can to ensure we’re the safest county, and women and girls are free from the fear of abuse.

David Sidwick
Dorset Police and Crime Commissioner




Message Sent By:
Dorset Police & Crime Commissioner




November 22, 2023


No let-up in the fight against knife crime

Last week, Operation Sceptre took place across Dorset, an intensive week of action focused on tackling knife crime. While in Dorset we have the second lowest rate of knife crime across England and Wales, I want to reassure you that leaves no room for complacency. I remain committed to ensuring people are protected on our streets in a bid to prevent the devastating consequences of knife crime.

As part of the intensification of action last week, Dorset Police focused important messaging towards parents and carers around the online sales of knives. This included questions around what parcels were being delivered to houses and what children were looking at online. Our officers also conducted high visibility patrols, equipped with the new knife wands I have funded. These wands do not replace the requirement for a physical search but are used as a screening device available for officers already conducting a lawful and justified physical search of a person following their arrest. I am also pleased that a portable knife arch I have funded is now available to officers. These enforcement methods, along with knife surrender bins placed at police stations in Weymouth, Bournemouth, and Poole, are just a small part of our ongoing work to keep Dorset’s streets safe.

Another important aspect of my commitment to driving down knife crime in Dorset focuses on education for young people. Last week, our Safer Schools and Communities team intensified their regular schedule of visits to schools across the county, delivering the Firearms and Knife Education (FAKE) input to students. I was pleased to see one of these sessions in action at Oak Academy on Friday. The officer’s message to the audience was clear: carrying a weapon puts you in more danger of serious injury or worse. The powerful interactive talk which included real life examples, videos and interactive engagement, had positive reviews from the most important people in the room – the students. These impressive young people at the school asked insightful questions, remaining engaged throughout the hour-long presentation. I was delighted to hear their responses to the input which ranged from effective to thought-provoking. I have repeatedly said how crucial education is in our fight against knife crime. Preventing our young people from carrying knives and weapons is pivotal to this battle. If this education helps to change the path of just one person or gives another the confidence to talk about concerns they may have, it will have succeeded.

What is clear from the range of engagements and discussions I had last week, is that tackling knife crime isn’t just the responsibility of the police. I am proud of our strong communities in Dorset, and it is down to all of us – from local authorities, partners, charities, and individuals – to do the right thing to drive down this offence. That is why I am determined to continue in my campaign for a Violence Reduction Unit in the county. I truly believe that to keep Dorset a safe place, and ensure it remains so for the next generations, this is the way forward. We owe it to the young people of Dorset.

David Sidwick
Dorset Police and Crime Commissioner




Message Sent By:
Dorset Police & Crime Commissioner




November 18, 2023


Joining forces to protect the young people of Dorset


This week during Operation Sceptre, a week-long campaign focusing on action against knife crime, I attended the Safer BCP Partnership’s conference ‘Keeping Our Young People Safe’. I heard powerful personal testimonies along with expert findings on the best ways to help vulnerable young people in Dorset.

The event provided a welcome opportunity to meet with key partners, as well as the chance to speak to charities and organisations about the work they do to help the children, teenagers, and young adults in our county. I was honoured to be the opening speaker and highlight the importance of putting young people at the centre and driving prevention and partnership working as integral parts of keeping our young people safe.

Protecting the younger generation from harm has been a key part of my mission to tackle violent crime in Dorset. It’s why I want a Violence Reduction Unit bringing together essential partners to address the underlying causes of these offences and get ahead of the problem for the sake of our young people.

During the event, the devastating impact of knife crime was told through the moving testimony of Cameron Hamilton’s grandmother, Tracy Jose. Cameron, 18, died after being stabbed in Bournemouth town centre in August this year. In describing the impact of the family’s tragic loss, Tracy’s powerful words and determination to stop this happening to another family struck a chord with every person in the room. I also learnt more about the superb work of the Ben Kinsella Trust in educating youngsters. Ben was a 16-year-old who was stabbed to death on the streets of London after celebrating the end of his GCSEs in 2008. Since his death, his family have campaigned tirelessly, successfully lobbying for a change in the law which saw mandatory life sentences for knife related murder raised from 15 to 25 years. The Trust have also won awards for their hard-hitting radio campaign, and they run exhibitions to educate young people on the dangers of knife crime.

I also heard from experts about the vulnerability of our young people, and why early intervention is vital for help, especially with those who can slip through the net. I know the background to knife crime offences with young people are increasingly complicated and the offence is often a symptom of complex factors. This is why it is so important to get to young people early with help, education, and expertise. Interventions at an early stage are key, as is support from a multitude of different agencies. Knife crime and the reasons behind it, cannot be solved through policing alone, and it was thought-provoking to hear from so many organisations about the work being done to deal with issues from county lines to domestic abuse.

It was great to have the chance to speak with representatives from groups which ranged from Victim Support, Sexual Health Dorset, No More Victims, Vita Nova, Escapeline, Shores, Stars and With You. These groups are doing crucial work to support our communities and provide help to victims, schools, and other stakeholders.

What particularly struck me from the different discussions and talks during the day, was the need to make sure the right services are provided at the right time. When that is done correctly, the positive impact goes beyond that one person, it has a ripple effect, on that person’s family, their friends, their community, and society in general. Sadly, we know all too well what happens when this goes wrong.

What was clear to me, was that it takes more than just policing to make a difference. During the event’s closing speech, three things were highlighted – prevention, patience, and persistence. I would add a fourth, partnership. Without joined-up effective communication and shared objectives, tackling the scourge of knife crime and protecting our young people from harm will not be successful. It is only through a broad church of expertise and multi-agency working, that we can turn the tide for the future generations of Dorset residents.

David Sidwick
Dorset Police and Crime Commissioner




Message Sent By:
Dorset Police & Crime Commissioner




November 17, 2023


Selection of Deputy Chief Constable Rachel Farrell

Dorset Police has selected Rachel Farrell as Deputy Chief Constable on a permanent basis.


Deputy Chief Constable Farrell was selected after a recruitment process chaired by Dorset Police Chief Constable Amanda Pearson.

DCC Farrell has been carrying out the role on a temporary basis since this summer.

Chief Constable Amanda Pearson said: “I am delighted to announce that I have selected Rachel Farrell as our new Deputy Chief Constable.

“While Rachel has been covering the role in a temporary capacity, I am thrilled that we will continue working together for the good of our people, our communities and our partners.

“I would like to congratulate Rachel on her selection.

“Dorset Police has a strong and cohesive Chief Officer team, and this will bring stability to the organisation as we focus on making Dorset a safe county for everyone.”

Dorset Police and Crime Commissioner David Sidwick said:” This is an excellent selection and my sincere congratulations go to Rachel. I trust and respect her for the true public servant that she is and I very much look forward to the contribution she will bring as Deputy Chief Constable to making Dorset the safest county in the UK.”



Message Sent By:
Julie Heath
(Dorset Police, Neighbourhood Alert Officer, Dorset)



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Beware Black Friday Scams


Beware the Deals of Black Friday
The scammers are lurking, don't be misled
With promises of discounts deep
On items you didn't know you need

Clicking unknown links can bring trouble
Your data and money, they'll swindle double
Fake sites abound, out there to cheat you
Don't input your details, they'll likely delete you

Reviews can be rigged, made up just for show
Not all bargain deals are the way to go
If it seems too good to be true, it likely is
Save your cash and credit, don't take the risk

This time of year online fraud is rife
May empty your wallet and cause you strife
Shop smart and safe, stick to what you know
Avoid the scams to protect your dough

The lure of deals can cloud our thinking
But safety first stops fraud sinking its teeth in
Heed this advice and shop with care
Happy Holidays, be cyber aware!


Below is a link to the Metropolitan Police website that has advice on how to protect yourself when online shopping. This includes what you can do to protect yourself, identifying fraudulent websites, how the scammers work, warning signs, phishing/spoof emails and other useful sites.

Online shopping | Metropolitan Police

REMEMBER. TAKE FIVE before you act. Only criminals try to rush you. Think could this be a scam? If you have been frauded contact you bank and action fraud.




Message Sent By:
Damian Cranny
(Dorset Police, Fraud Protect Officer, Dorset)



November 14, 2023


Dorset Police introduce metal detecting wands to help tackle knife crime

Frontline police officers will be equipped with metal detecting wands to target knife carriers and seize concealed weapons, as part of a national crackdown on knife crime.

Handheld metal detectors have been distributed to teams across Dorset and will be used to support stop and search powers as part of Operation Sceptre.

Operation Sceptre is a national initiative to tackle knife crime and will run from Monday 13 November to Sunday 19 November 2023.

The wands will not replace the requirement for a physical search but be used as a screening device available to officers already conducting a lawful and justified physical search of a person following their arrest.

View full article here: https://news.dorset.police.uk/news-article/60cf031d-3f82-ee11-9d5c-6045bdd24049

Throughout this week of action for Operation Sceptre, all 43 police forces will take part in intensified efforts to crack down on knife crime.

Dorset Police is providing knife surrender bins at Bournemouth, Poole and Weymouth Police Stations for those wishing to get rid of unwanted knives.

The theme for the week is around online knife retailers and raising awareness of what packages are being sent to young people at home.

Knives can be too easily available online. Dorset Police is encouraging retailers to be aware of who they are selling to and to ensure they are following the appropriate safety guidelines for legal selling and distribution.

The Dorset Police Safer Schools and Communities Teams will also be delivering education in local schools to raise awareness around the consequences and dangers of carrying a knife. The Force is asking parents and care givers to ask ‘what’s in the package?’ so they know what their young people are receiving through the post.

If you have any information or concerns about someone carrying a knife, please report it to Dorset Police online via the website dorset.police.uk, or CrimeStoppers UK on 0800 555111. Your information could help save a life.

For details of Bournemouth, Poole and Weymouth Police Stations visit: Dorset.Police.UK/PEO

Parents can seek advice about their chilld’s welfare at: Parent Talk - Support for Parents from Action For Children

Retailers can visit this website for guidance on selling knives: nbcc.police.uk/knifeguidance





Message Sent By:
Julie Heath
(Dorset Police, Neighbourhood Alert Officer, Dorset)



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Book your space on our HIDDEN CRIME webinars - starts next week


Click the link above for all the details - see Upcoming Webinars.

(They all take place on ZOOM.)







Message Sent By:
Cheryl Spruce
(NWN, Head of Membership & Community Engagement, England and Wales)




November 12, 2023


Officers, staff and volunteers recognised at latest Dorset Police awards ceremony


The Force has recognised the outstanding performance of its officers, staff and volunteers at its latest awards ceremony.

The event was held on Thursday 2 November 2023, and acknowledged their dedication to their vital role in policing, to support the Force’s vision to make Dorset a safe county for everyone.

View full article here: https://news.dorset.police.uk/news-article/8afb8864-537a-ee11-9d5c-6045bdd24049



Message Sent By:
Julie Heath
(Dorset Police, Neighbourhood Alert Officer, Dorset)



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Watch out for fake QR codes


Watch out for fake QR codes which have been placed over the original ones, especially on car park meters. Check to see if it will peel off!!!

Don't get tricked, avoid the click,
Of strange QR's that make you sick.
They can steal your dough, as you may know,
So watch out before you go.
Scan with care, to avoid a scare,
Double check each link laid bare.
Stay alert, don't get hurt,
Keep your data covered and secure.



Message Sent By:
Damian Cranny
(Dorset Police, Fraud Protect Officer, Dorset)







How we're tackling the scourge of knife crime in Dorset



From November 13, a week-long national campaign focusing on action against knife crime will take place. Known as Operation Sceptre, the week will see officers and police staff carry out a range of different activities and events across Dorset as part of our mission to crack down on knife-enabled crime and violence.

Ahead of this, I want to reassure you of all the work which has been happening to tackle knife crime offences, day in and day out across Dorset. Over the summer, you will know we intensified our efforts in the fight against knife crime, with a particular focus on Bournemouth town centre. That work continues to this day.

Knife crime has a profound impact on families and communities, and I am determined that we must work together to prevent future tragedies in this county. While Dorset has the second lowest rate of knife crime across England and Wales*, I want to be clear that we are not complacent. This is demonstrated in the most recent ONS statistics from June 2022 to June 2023, which showed a 7% drop in the number of incidents of crimes termed as ‘violence with injury’. This shows the work we’re putting into preventing violent crime in our communities is beginning to have a positive impact. ‘Violence with injury’ includes offences such as homicide, knife crime, and gun crime and areas of criminality where serious violence or its threat is inherent. I am determined to continue doing all I can to support the force in bringing down the numbers of these offences and in turn create a climate in Dorset which refuses to tolerate knife crime.

Since the summer, I have put £20,000 in place to fund knife wands for every car and a portable knife arch. These vital pieces of equipment will ensure we can act quickly against the threat of knives on our streets and will equip Dorset Police officers with the tools they need. As well as the knife wands, the force also has a portable knife arch coming, which people may have seen in use by British Transport Police at the train station this summer. I am clear, Dorset will not be a place where it is easy to carry a knife.

One new measure which I have welcomed wholeheartedly is the launch of the Bournemouth Town Team. This is a partnership arrangement set-up in a bid to ensure closer working arrangements between Dorset Police, the Bournemouth Business Improvement District (BID), town rangers, CSAS officers, parks team, seafront team and Local Authority ASB officers. This type of joint working arrangement is crucial if we are to truly combat violent offences in the town centre. Luke Gilbert, who has returned to Bournemouth as CSAS Senior Officer said: “The logistical benefit of joining forces to deliver the Town Team has seen a direct increase in officers from all agencies in and around the town centre being able to be more proactive and reactive to ongoing issues. For example, one of the issues we have seen a direct fall in already is the presence of anti-social street drinking in the town centre.” By creating a climate which doesn’t tolerate ASB and other types of disorder, as partners we’re sending a strong message to offenders, that we will not tolerate crime in any form.

I am also pleased that the Dorset Police-led Operation Fireglow and Operation Nightjar which target ASB and serious crime in Bournemouth, led to 28 arrests, 47 Section 35 dispersal orders and 21 stop and searches over the summer. I know staff working in the town centre have said they saw a reduction in the level of thefts and ASB thanks to the increased police presence, with Operation Nightjar having a positive impact with businesses. However, Dorset Police cannot tackle these offences alone, which is why the joint working of the Town Team with partners such as the Bournemouth BID is crucial if we are to truly drive down crime in the town centre.

While I am sure these measures are making a difference, each alone will not prevent young people carrying knives as weapons. That is why I am continuing my campaign for a Violence Reduction Unit in Dorset. This unit would bring together essential partners to reduce local violent crime and address the underlying causes. As we’ve seen in other parts of the country, the model is so important as VRUs understand the local needs of the area and identify where and how interventions would be most effective. Over the past two years, I’ve been calling on the local authorities to support setting up a VRU, and recently I’ve met with the Bournemouth MPs - Conor Burns and Tobias Ellwood - as well as the leader of BCP Council, Vikki Slade, to discuss the need for this scheme. I consider it a necessity for our county. We need to get ahead of the problem of young people carrying knives. That’s why I am so passionate about getting a VRU into Dorset to make certain that hand in hand with all the other initiatives mentioned in this newsletter, we drive towards making Dorset the safest county.


David Sidwick
Dorset Police and Crime Commissioner


REFERENCES
*This is based on police recorded crime data involving the use of knives and sharp instruments, for the year ending December 2022.

The data can be found here: Digital Crime and Performance Pack - His Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire & Rescue Services (justiceinspectorates.gov.uk)



Message Sent By:
Dorset Police & Crime Commissioner




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Learning from you as our fight against rural crime progresses


I know how important combatting rural crime is to communities across Dorset. It’s been one of the top priorities of my Police and Crime Plan since I stepped into this job more than two years ago. And I’m pleased to say we have seen some significant improvements and success stories in that time.

Over the summer, along with fellow PCCs in Devon and Cornwall, Avon and Somerset, Gloucestershire, and Wiltshire, I launched a survey to explore how crime impacts rural communities. The aim was to gather information to help me understand in even more detail how people living and working in Dorset’s rural communities are affected by the types of offences usually only experienced in the countryside.

The survey certainly returned some very interesting results, which I’d like to tell you about, including some updates on how we continue to address your concerns.

One of the most pleasing aspects of the survey was that the majority of respondents said they had not experienced rural crime in the past year. While this goes to show the progress we are making, I want to reassure you it doesn’t mean we’re complacent; far from it. The Dorset Police Rural Crime Team are working tirelessly to tackle the offences which affect you. They – and I - are determined to ensure positive changes are felt by you all. Our expanded rural crime team – which has grown from three to a capacity of 18 – has been able to return more than £1million work of stolen machinery to victims over the past year. NFU Mutual’s annual report showed a 28% drop in the cost of crime for Dorset, compared to an increase of 22.1% nationally.

The survey also showed me that fly-tipping was the most common crime experienced by you, as well as one of the offences which concerns you the most, along with theft of agricultural machinery and theft of livestock. Beyond the troubling issues of fly-tipping being a health hazard as well as an eyesore in our county, I know how frustrating these incidents can be for Dorset residents. And while local authorities are responsible for investigating, clearing, and taking the appropriate action over this, I am pleased to be able to tell you that I have agreed to fund an evidence gathering role to enable further enforcement of fly-tipping offenders in Dorset. I hope this will go some way to tackling this blight on our countryside and send a clear message to offenders that Dorset will not accept this behaviour.

One of the results I was saddened to see, was that nearly 50% of those who responded said they had not reported rural crimes to the police. I would strongly urge you to report incidents of crime to Dorset Police – either via 999 if you are in immediate danger or through the online reporting system in non-emergencies. To successfully tackle the types of incidents involved in rural crime, the police must know about it. Without intelligence and knowledge of incidents which have occurred, the force cannot deploy resources and officers to where they are needed. Help them to help you by telling police about these offences.

We have a lot to be proud of in Dorset when it comes to how we deal with rural crime. Recently we also launched
our Mounted Rural Volunteers scheme in which volunteers on horseback work with the rural crime team to provide intelligence to support and protect local rural communities. These volunteers will be engaging with people while out on their regular hacks along bridleways, lanes, and country roads to gather intelligence and report anything suspicious.

We also have our Country Watch website, a one-stop rural resource centre for all things related to rural crime. We wanted to bring all the information you need in one place. The site provides crime prevention advice, information on how to report fly-tipping and where to get help if you’re a victim of crime.

However, we can’t fight rural crime alone. Over the years I have demonstrated the importance of partnership working when it comes to tackling these offences. From successful lobbying with fellow PCCs for tougher sanctions to tackle the menace of fly-tipping, to supporting the National Farmers Union in their campaign to deter and prevent illegal hare coursing, joint working is key to continued success. This is something I have tried to foster through the Dorset Partnership Against Rural Crime. Set-up in 2022, the organisation brings together my office along with Dorset Police, BCP Council, Dorset Council, the Country Land and Business Association (CLA), Cornish Mutual, Dorset Association of Parish and Town Councils (DAPTC), Dorset Wildlife Trust, the Environment Agency, Forestry England, Historic England, Kingston Maurward College, the National Trust, Natural England, National Farmers Union (NFU) and NFU Mutual to work together and share knowledge to support our rural communities.

But the work does not stop there. Along with my fellow PCCs in the south west, we will continue to target Organised Crime Groups (OCGs) involved in rural crime through Operation Ragwort. This campaign brings together all police forces in the region to combat crimes such as theft of vehicles and equipment, poaching and hare coursing. It is crucial we work together across the region. Criminals don’t see borders, and neither will we.

I hope this survey and our work so far demonstrates how seriously we take rural crime in Dorset. We will continue our fight to tackle these offences, as we strive to make Dorset the safest county.


David Sidwick
Dorset Police and Crime Commissioner





Message Sent By:
Dorset Police & Crime Commissioner



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Two projects to help make Dorset a safe place to live


In this week’s newsletter I would like to update you on two significant initiatives which will further arm us with the vital tools to tackle some of the key priorities of my Police and Crime Plan – cutting anti-social behaviour, putting victims and communities first, fighting violent crime and rural crime.

As was clear in this year’s Annual Survey, anti-social behaviour is also still a big concern of yours, the residents of Dorset. Of those who responded to the survey, 71% of you said ASB is the crime which affects you the most. I want to reassure you that Operation Relentless, our campaign to tackle ASB in Dorset, continues apace, with hot spot patrols across the county. These are having a positive impact, with incidents of ASB falling by 13% compared to 2021/22.

Last week I announced two pieces of news about projects which will enable us to take our vital work even further. Today, I want to tell you how these schemes will work. The Immediate Justice pilot scheme and our successful Safer Streets funding bid of nearly £1million will further enhance our capability to deal with ASB and other crimes which directly affect our communities. I know anti-social behaviour has a negative impact on the places we live but hope these two projects demonstrate once more how committed I am to tackle these crimes.

Firstly, Immediate Justice, is a scheme Dorset Police is piloting under the Government’s Anti-Social Behaviour Plan along with nine other forces. The introduction of this scheme is designed so swift and visible punishments are delivered to those who have committed ASB and other low-level crimes.

We’re asking for help from the residents of Dorset. I’d like to hear from you, what type of actions you would like to see take place under the scheme. For example, would you like those who have done wrong to clean-up graffiti or maintain parks and public spaces? I am determined to get Immediate Justice right for everyone in Dorset, and value your input. Take the survey here: Immediate Justice survey

The other piece of good news I am delighted to share, is our successful bid from the Home Office’s Safer Street Fund. Dorset has been awarded almost £1million for projects which focus on the safety of women and girls, as well as tackling crime in our rural communities.

The funding, which was awarded following a joint bid with BCP Council and Dorset Council, will include the introduction of a Women’s Night Safety Charter, ‘Theft and Burglary’ prevention packs to mark rural farm property as well as more CCTV cameras in places across Dorset. Thanks to this substantial funding, numerous communities across the county will be able to feel even safer on the streets where they live as these projects roll-out.

With this money we can provide help to a wide range of projects including many more beyond those mentioned, on a scale we haven’t seen before. And it is my hope that this vital funding will benefit communities across the whole of Dorset, helping to make us the safest county to live.


David Sidwick
Dorset Police and Crime Commissioner





Message Sent By:
Dorset Police & Crime Commissioner


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Why I welcome the new law to make nitrous oxide (NOS) possession illegal

It will come as no surprise to many of you, that I wholeheartedly welcome the introduction of today’s law to make possession of nitrous oxide illegal. For some time now I have been campaigning for this to happen, and I am delighted to see this important change in the law go live from today (November 8).

In my role as Association of Police and Crime Commissioners’ (APCC) Joint Lead for Addictions and Substance Misuse, with co-chair Durham PCC Joy Allen, I have repeatedly raised concerns over the past two years - publicly and directly with the Government - about the prevalence of nitrous oxide in a bid for stronger legislation surrounding this harmful drug. From initially leading calls for a review on nitrous oxide, to vigorously lobbying the Home Office for a potential crackdown on the drug, I am proud to have been part of the fight to achieve this vital change, protecting our young people and communities in Dorset and beyond. I used my platform to call for serious discussion on the issue, lobbying tirelessly to ensure recommendations made in the subsequent report were taken further to give the police and courts the powers to crack down on those who supply this drug to children and young people. To now see this law in action, benefitting every county in the country, is a key milestone in my ongoing fight to protect the most vulnerable in our communities.

This new law will mean those who repeatedly misuse the drug could face up to two years in prison, while dealers of nitrous oxide, will face up to 14 years behind bars. This ban will make nitrous oxide a controlled Class C drug under the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971. Penalties for possessing the substance could include an unlimited fine, community service, caution, or more serious custodial sentence for repeat offenders. Of course, there will exemptions for legitimate reasons, such as in maternity wards for pain relief during labour.

I know the sight of those silver cannisters and balloon litter strewn across our parks, beaches and playgrounds was a cause for concern in communities across Dorset. As your Police and Crime Commissioner, it is my mission to ensure anti-social behaviour is tackled, ensuring you feel safe where you live and work. I hope this legislation will go some way towards this and give police the tools to deal with the issues which affect your community.

The biggest motivation to tackling nitrous oxide came from the impact this drug has on the health of our young people. Back in 2021, after calling for action, I welcomed a review into the harm caused by nitrous oxide, or NOS as it is also known. The use of this drug was becoming normalised among young people in Dorset and was increasingly being used a recreational drug we were told by youth workers. Using it was seen as ‘harmless fun’ despite the side-effects of heavy use potentially causing nerve-related symptoms such as being unable to walk, and loss of sensation. These concerns have been repeatedly raised by medical experts, with neurologists publishing new treatment guidelines for wider NHS use earlier this year (February 2023, Queen Mary University of London).

When the report from the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs was published in March 2023, it suggested additional measures were needed to reduce the health and social harms of nitrous oxide. It recommended the Government focus on non-legitimate routes of supply including restricting direct-to-consumer sales, restrictions on cannister sizes that are not for legitimate use and restrictions on the volume of sales customers can purchase. But this didn’t go far enough. I - along with my co-chair – called for further action to be taken, highlighting evidence which also linked nitrous oxide with needless deaths and serious injury on roads across the country. Now, just a few months later, to get to this day where possession of nitrous oxide is illegal, is a huge step in the right direction towards tackling substance misuse.

But I know there is much more still to do. Tackling the issue of drugs in Dorset is a priority in my Police and Crime Plan. Whether this is through continuing to lobby over the harmful effects of cannabis, to leading the multi-agency Combatting Drugs Partnership in Dorset, I remain committed to making Dorset the safest county to live.


David Sidwick
Dorset Police and Crime Commissioner




Message Sent By:
Dorset Police & Crime Commissioner



November 2, 2023


Ask for ANI – help for domestic abuse victims

Did you know that victims of domestic abuse can discreetly signal for help from the safety of a pharmacy which is participating in the Ask for ANI scheme? ANI stands for Action Needed Immediately.


Victims use the codeword ANI in participating pharmacies, including all Boots stores and some independent pharmacies in Dorset to let staff know that they require an emergency police response or help with contacting a helpline or specialist support service.

Pharmacies which are taking part display posters with a distinctive hand symbol to let customers know that they can approach their staff to seek help.

When a victim uses the codeword or asks for help, the member of staff will ask the victim to accompany them to the consultation room. They will then check whether the victim is in danger and wants the police to be called. If so, the staff member will offer the use of a phone to dial 999 or make the call on the victim’s behalf.

If the victim is not in an emergency situation, the staff member will support the victim to contact a national domestic abuse helpline or local support service. They may also contact the police via 101.

View full article here: https://news.dorset.police.uk/news-article/d78b5a30-ae78-ee11-9d5c-6045bdd24049


You can find out which pharmacies in your area are participating in Ask For ANI and more about the the service on the Dorset Police website. Here you will also find details of how pharmacies can sign up to Ask For ANI.

https://www.dorset.police.uk/police-forces/dorset-police/areas/campaigns/campaigns/ask-for-ani

The scheme was developed by the Home Office with the help of partners including the domestic abuse sector, pharmacy associations and the police.



Message Sent By:
Julie Heath
(Dorset Police, Neighbourhood Alert Officer, Dorset)



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Dorset Police warn against social media scammers

As part of Cyber Security Awareness Month this October, Dorset Police are encouraging the public to turn on two-step verification for their email and social media accounts.







Message Sent By:
Julie Heath
(Dorset Police, Neighbourhood Alert Officer, Dorset)




October 31

Just 2 weeks to go! Can you help us reach our fundraising goal for youth work?


We are delighted to invite you to take part in our annual Crime and Community survey. The survey is in its fourth year, and we want to hear your views on crime, community, and your experience of Neighbourhood Watch. The survey is open to everyone across England and Wales, regardless of whether you are a Neighbourhood Watch member.

https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/surveyCC2023

All responses will be anonymised and aggregated, and everyone who completes the 5 – 10 minute survey can choose to opt-in to the prize draw to win one of three £25 Amazon vouchers.

The results will enable us as a charity to better understand crime and fear of crime, benchmark whether membership in a Neighbourhood Watch scheme or living in a Neighbourhood Watch area impacts crime levels, neighbourliness, and the willingness of communities to work together. This information is vitally important to ensure we can better target our work to meet your crime and community needs and concerns.

Last year our survey received a great response, providing us with rich and useful data.


Please complete our survey and share it via email and social with all the various communities you belong to, whether they be a Neighbourhood Watch community or other such as sport, religious or work community. This will help us receive a good balance of responses from members and non-members, enabling us to compare experiences between these two groups. Alternatively, reshare our social posts (Facebook / Twitter / Instagram / LinkedIn) to your channels.

The survey closes on 17th November.

Thank you for your support.


NEIGHBOURHOOD WATCH NETWORK, Central Support Team
WG07, Vox Studios, 1-45 Durham Street, Vauxhall, SE11 5JH
Follow us on our social channels ( ourwatch.org.uk / Facebook / Twitter / Instagram / LinkedIn)
Neighbourhood Watch Network is a charity registered in England & Wales, CIO no: 1173349




Message Sent By:
Sandra Bauer
(NWN, Head of Policy, Partnerships and Projects, England and Wales)





October 30

Working Together to Tackle Shoplifting in Dorset



As part of last week’s national week of action on business crime, I joined partners united in the fight against offences such as shoplifting and anti-social behaviour, to talk to staff at businesses in Poole. Along with Dorset Police’s Crime Prevention Design Advisor Claire Davis, PCSO Kerrie, BCP Council’s Anti-social Behaviour Officer Hayley and Jacqui Rock, Poole Business Improvement District (BID) lead, we spent some time with retailers providing support and advice.

It was great to see this partnership in action, engaging with businesses and employees to support Safer Business Action Week, equipping business owners and security staff with the tools they need to tackle crime and raise awareness of the support which is available.

During our visit, one of our Neighbourhood Policing Team on patrol informed us about a shoplifter who had been caught just minutes before following reports of a theft at a nearby supermarket. The offender had also been abusive towards staff but thankfully was dealt with appropriately by the officer at the scene. This incident demonstrates the importance of reporting offences to police and partners. Without the information from businesses, we cannot tackle the crimes which impact your livelihoods. Supplying intelligence to police means officers can begin the process of bringing Dorset’s prolific offenders to justice.

I know how damaging incidents of shoplifting can be. Here in Dorset, reports increased from 2,891 to 3,944 between June 2022 and June 2023. This 36.4% increase really reflects what is happening on a national scale. I am dedicated to tackling this crime, and through partnerships like the Dorset Safer Business Partnership, I am committed to driving down these offences and protecting our hard-working business owners and employees.

That is why I welcome the ongoing discussions between politicians, retailers, and police representatives around shoplifting, which have taken place in Westminster this week. It’s not just the financial impact of shoplifting which hurts businesses, but the threat to the safety of hard-working staff which makes this such a distressing crime.

Another way I have pledged to support businesses in the fight against business crime, is through my Business Crime Community Fund, giving grants to BIDs. I have invited BIDs across Dorset to apply for funding through this project, which will help them deliver lasting change to their areas. Those who are successful in their applications, can use the grants of up to £5,000 towards initiatives which reduce business crime or abuse against shop workers.

During our Safer Business Action Week engagement event in Poole, Jacqui Rock, Poole Business Improvement District’s lead, said: “It’s been great to have this one-to-one time with the PCC, visiting Poole’s businesses. It really demonstrates that he is invested in tackling these crimes. To have his presence here is so valuable – and you can see how engaged he is with people – so many people have come up to talk to him.

“Businesses are frustrated by crimes such as shoplifting and abuse towards their staff. I do not want our shop owners to become victims; we have got to protect them and keep Poole safe in order to encourage even more footfall. It’s all about communication between partners and clear messaging to let offenders know they are not going to easily succeed in Poole going forward.”

Protecting Dorset businesses from crime is a responsibility I take very seriously. But it cannot be done through policing alone. We need to work together to ensure we make Dorset the safest county to live and work.


David Sidwick
Dorset Police and Crime Commissioner





Message Sent By:
Dorset Police & Crime Commissioner




October 27

Immediate Justice Pilot Survey: Have your say!




In March of this year, the Government announced that under the Anti-Social Behaviour Plan, Dorset would be one of ten trailblazer police force areas to introduce the ‘Immediate Justice’ pilot scheme, where swift and visible punishments are delivered to those who have committed crime and anti-social behaviour (ASB).

The new scheme, targets those found committing low level crime and sets out to ensure the perpetrators make reparation for the damage they have inflicted on victims and the community and the Police and Crime Commissioner, David Sidwick would like your guidance on what types of actions you would like to see take place under the scheme.

The Commissioner said: “Adequate, effective, and prompt reparation is intended to promote justice and that is at the heart of ‘Immediate Justice’ as a concept – to make good and repair, to restore something to the way it should have been and to try and rebuild the community where the harm was caused.”

“What I want to know now from the people of Dorset is what they would like to see happen in their community. Would you like those who have done wrong to clean up graffiti or maintain parks and public spaces for example? It’s really important to me that we get this scheme right for Dorset and that can only happen with the input of the people – so please do complete the survey and tell me what you want to see happen in your community.”

Take the survey here.


David Sidwick
Dorset Police and Crime Commissioner





Message Sent By:
Dorset Police & Crime Commissioner




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Statement from the PCC on Annual Survey


Over the Summer, I joined members of my office who were out and about talking to you about how safe you feel in Dorset and my thanks go to all the people who not only took the time to stop and talk with us, but to those who also took the time to complete my annual survey on the subject.

As your elected representative, this survey continues to be a vital way for me to gain a deeper understanding of the thoughts and opinions you all have about policing and it is really important to gather those views, because ultimately, they help shape the future of the service.

With that in mind, I would like to share with you an overview of the results.





I note that once again ASB is a top concern for you all, with residential burglary and drug crime making up your top three concerns.

To give some reassurance, Dorset Police continue to implement Operation Relentless to tackle ASB, with hot spot patrols continuing and increasing across the county and I am pleased to be able to report that incidents of ASB have reduced by 13 per cent compared to 21/22.

In the most recent report from the Office of National Statistics, it was confirmed that there has been a 14 per cent drop in the number of residential burglaries in Dorset. Earlier in the year, Dorset Police made a commitment to uphold their 100% attendance rate to domestic burglaries, as they supported the national commitment to visit all victims of home burglary and I vow to ensure that approach continues.

When it comes to tackling drug crime, more and more action is being taken, indeed we have just concluded the sixth phase of Operation Scorpion and across the county in a week of intensive policing, there have been 26 drug-related arrests, over £93,000 worth of illegal drugs seized and the profits and paraphernalia of drug dealing, including cash and weapons have been taken off our streets.

The above few lines only give a snapshot of the work that is happening to address your concerns, but your concerns, the policing issues that worry you, that you want dealt with are the reasons I do this job and I hope you can see we, my office, Dorset Police and all our partners are pulling together, are working on your priorities and ultimately getting the results you want.

To find out more about the work we are doing, please head on over to my website.



David Sidwick
Dorset Police and Crime Commissioner




Message Sent By:

Dorset Police & Crime Commissioner


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All Tricks and No Treat


Beware the tricks that lurk online,
On All Hallows' Eve when myths entwine.
For fiends with wicked screens may pry,
And steal your data with their lies.


Phishing scams seek your information,
Refund schemes target compensation.
Friends and family they impersonate,
Purchase fraud leaves you at fate.


They promise fortune, love, and more,
But truth and safety they ignore.
With links and ads they seek to cheat,
Your secrets and your gold they'll glean.


Banks and police will never ask
For money, PINs or passwords - don't react!
Ignore all texts and emails unsolicited,
Attachments and links should not be visited.


Report suspicious messages you see
To Action Fraud immediately.
This Halloween, be wise, take care-
Foil fraudsters, show them you're aware!

Action Fraud





Message Sent By:

Damian Cranny
(Dorset Police, Fraud Protect Officer, Dorset)


October 24, 2023


Officers searching for a missing woman in Christchurch have very sadly found a body

At approximately 12.30pm on Monday 23 October 2023 the body of a woman was located in some woodland close to Gordon Road in Highcliffe.

While the body has not yet been formally identified, it is believed to be that of Judith Kelly who was last seen at 10.13am on Saturday 21 October 2023. Her family have been informed. The death is not being treated as suspicious and HM Coroner has been notified.

We would like to thank everyone who assisted with the searches and our thoughts are with Judith’s family and loved ones at this extremely difficult time.


Message Sent By:
Julie Heath
(Dorset Police, Neighbourhood Alert Officer, Dorset)




October 23

Dorset Police works with communities to make Dorset #NoPlaceForDrugs



Dorset Police has been taking part in the latest phase of Operation Scorpion to combat drug supply and make the South West a hostile environment for criminal gangs.

Phase six of Operation Scorpion coincided with a national County Lines Intensification Week, which ran from Monday 9 October to Sunday 15 October 2023 and saw forces clamp down on county lines activity through various operational activities, such as warrant executions, educational inputs into schools and safeguarding vulnerable people.

A collaboration between police forces in Dorset, Devon & Cornwall, Avon & Somerset, Gloucestershire and Wiltshire, their respective Police and Crime Commissioners, British Transport Police, the South West Regional Organised Crime Unit (SW ROCU), and the charity Crimestoppers, Operation Scorpion focuses on pooling resources to combat drug supply in the region to make the South West a hostile environment for drugs.

The public plays an important role in helping police forces to build an intelligence picture and throughout the week our communities were asked to report intelligence linked to drugs activity – no matter how big or small. Using the community intelligence provided, Dorset Police carried out enforcement activities, disrupting those who are profiting from the damage and harm that drugs bring to our communities.

As a result of community intelligence and operational focus, county lines were disrupted, vulnerable people safeguarded, and educational support was provided to young people and families.

The clampdown led to:

· 26 arrests

· Five people charged

· Over £9,000 worth of drugs seized

· £1,300 cash seized

· 17 mobile phones seized

· Two weapons seized

· Three vulnerable adults safeguarded

Police and Crime Commissioner David Sidwick said: “Once again the hard work and investigative skills of Dorset Police and the regional forces and partners involved in Operation Scorpion has yielded some truly impressive results.”

“In Dorset, in a week of intensive policing, there have been 26 drug-related arrests, over £9000 worth of illegal drugs seized, and the profits and paraphernalia of drug dealing, including cash and weapons have been taken off our streets.”

“There have been some 17 mobile phones seized in Dorset, and it is my fervent hope that those phones contain valuable information on dealers, on active county lines and hopefully, details of those who are much higher up the chain of supply – because I want to put a stop the misery they peddle and put pay to the life-destroying trade that they want to see flourish in on our communities.”

“The results from across the region have magnified and multiplied the action taken here in our county, with thousands and thousands of pounds worth of drugs being taken off the streets, almost 100 arrests being made, cars and laptops being seized as well as a significant number of people being safeguarded. All this action is happening to make our region and our county a safer place to be – so my thanks go to everyone involved in Operation Scorpion for taking the fight to the criminals and making sure they know our region is ‘No Place For Drugs’.

Assistant Chief Constable Mark Callaghan said: “Once again, Operational Scorpion has seen all five police forces from the South West join together to send a clear message to organised criminals and those who cause harm in our communities that there is no place for them in our region.

“I would like to thank our public for the intelligence they continue to provide us. We rely on this information to help provide us with a picture of what is taking place. Thanks to information we have received from members of the public, we have been able to disrupt organised criminal gangs, remove drugs from the streets of Dorset and safeguard members of the public.

“Please remember, if you see something that doesn’t seem right or doesn’t feel right, tell us. Your information could be the missing piece of the puzzle.

“We will continue to execute warrants and target organised gangs to make our county a hostile place for criminals, while protecting our communities and those individuals who need our help the most.”

If you have concerns about drug use or county lines in your area you can contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or go to our website www.dorset.police.uk – always call 999 if a crime is in progress.


David Sidwick
Dorset Police and Crime Commissioner





Message Sent By:
Dorset Police & Crime Commissioner




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Latest crime statistics show that Dorset remains one of the safest areas in the country.


The Office for National Statistics released data on Thursday 19 October 2023, which confirms that Dorset remains one of the safest areas in the country.

During the 12 months from June 2022 to June 2023, overall crime in Dorset has decreased by 0.5 per cent, against a national average increase of 2.2 per cent.

During this latest period, violence against the person fell by 1.3 per cent in, lower than the national decrease of 0.8 per cent, while violence with injury fell by 7.2 per cent, compared to a national average of 0.8 per cent.

Reports of sexual offences dropped by 11.4 per cent, compared to a national decrease of 1.6 per cent. Additionally, reports of rape offences reduced by 10.7 per cent, compared to a national decrease of 3.3 per cent.

View full article here: https://news.dorset.police.uk/news-article/d5f28732-1b6f-ee11-9d5c-6045bdd24049




Message Sent By:
Julie Heath
(Dorset Police, Neighbourhood Alert Officer, Dorset)




October 19, 2023


Dorset Police and businesses work together to tackle crime

Officers from Dorset Police are supporting a national week of action to strengthen relationships between retail, security and police in an effort to tackle business crime.

Today, Monday 16 October 2023, is the start of a week of action, co-ordinated by the National Business Crime Centre (NBCC) that aims to equip business owners and security staff with the tools to tackle business crime and raise awareness of the support available to help protect them and their business.

During the week of action, local policing teams across Dorset will carry out various crime prevention activities and initiatives to increase engagement with local businesses and retail outlets, to improve relationships and offer signposting advice to help prevent crimes from occurring in the first place.

Businesses can be affected by a wide variety of crimes from theft, burglary and cyber crime to abusive or violent behaviour directed at staff. A Safer Business Action Day is all about partnership working, with the police, business, private security, Business Crime Reduction Partnerships and Business Improvement Districts, working together to reduce crime.

With the rising cost of living, businesses are potentially more vulnerable to crime. Businesses need to be able to deter people before they commit crime, which means knowing how they are vulnerable to criminals and making it difficult for individuals and organised crime groups to commit a crime against them.


View full article here: https://news.dorset.police.uk/news-article/519869b6-016c-ee11-9d5c-6045bdd24049


Dorset Police can carry out crime prevention surveys on commercial properties. For more information please contact: crimereductionwest@dorset.pnn.police.uk. For further help and advice on business safety please visit https://www.dorset.police.uk/business or contact your local Neighbourhood Policing Team via the
Force website.




Message Sent By:
Julie Heath
(Dorset Police, Neighbourhood Alert Officer, Dorset)



------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Dorset Police warn against social media scammers

As part of Cyber Security Awareness Month this October, Dorset Police are encouraging the public to turn on two-step verification for their email and social media accounts.


A recent report from Action Fraud shows that a number of people in Dorset have been targeted by scammers attempting to take control of their WhatsApp account.

Email and social media account hacking is the most reported cyber-dependent crime in the UK. Nationally, a staggering 18,000 people reported their accounts hacked in the 2021/22 financial year, with many more going unreported.

In the current scam affecting Dorset residents, criminals add their victim’s phone number to a new phone, prompting the app to request a code for two-step verification (2SV). The scammer will then contact the victim and, one way or another, persuade them to provide the code. Once they have the code, the scammer can then take over the account and use it for further fraud.

Chris Conroy from the Dorset Police Cyber Crime Unit said: “Used correctly, enabling 2SV can keep criminals out of your account, even if they know your password. Never give your code to someone else, no matter how hard they try to convince you. The UK’s National Cyber Security Centre recommends that people set up this extra level of security on their 'important' accounts - accounts that protect things that you really care about and would cause the most harm to you if the passwords were stolen.”

Two-step verification is also known as two-factor authentication (2FA) and multi-factor authentication (MFA). 2SV is a way of 'double checking' that you really are the person you are claiming to be when you're using online services.

Chris continued: “Data from Action Fraud suggests that no one age group is more likely to targeted. This can happen to anyone. Our free cyber awareness sessions are available to anyone in Dorset. We regularly speak to community groups, businesses, schools, and charities who want to feel more confident using the internet and online services.”

The sessions offer impartial advice and guidance about common cyber threats like phishing, malware, and email scams, as well as providing advice on how you can keep your online accounts safe.

If you are interested in booking a cyber awareness session for you, your business or community group please visit the Dorset Police website: www.dorset.police.uk/cyber

For more information about protecting your accounts, visit the National Cyber Security Centre’s Cyber Aware website: www.ncsc.gov.uk/cyberaware/home





Message Sent By:
Julie Heath
(Dorset Police, Neighbourhood Alert Officer, Dorset)




October 16

Rural Mounted Volunteers scheme launched to help tackle Rural Crime



This week I am delighted to announce the launch of the Dorset Police Rural Mounted Volunteers scheme. The scheme will see volunteers on horseback work with the Dorset Police Rural Crime Team, providing intelligence and information to support and protect local rural communities.

Yesterday, I was pleased to welcome the first four volunteers into the scheme at the launch ceremony at Kingston Maurward College. The volunteers will engage with local rural communities while out on their regular hacks along bridleways, lanes and country roads, gathering intelligence and reporting anything suspicious.

I have wanted to introduce this scheme for a while, so seeing it come to fruition is really pleasing. Having mounted rural volunteers will help further connect the Dorset Police Rural Crime Team with the communities they serve as well as offer a unique vantage point that will not only gather intelligence that may have been missed by standard patrols but improve visibility within our rural communities.

Rural Mounted Volunteers will be the eyes and ears for rural communities, similar to Neighbourhood Watch groups. They will work closely with the Dorset Police Rural Crime Team, providing intelligence and information to help support crime prevention.

With their elevated positions on horseback, the Rural Mounted Volunteers have a unique vantage point and can spot many things that someone on foot or in a vehicle might not otherwise be able to see or even be able to get near to. This is all valuable information, which might not otherwise come to police attention.

Dorset Police volunteers come from all walks of life and bring with them an array of skills and experiences. Sharing their knowledge and time with the police will make a positive impact on all rural communities across Dorset. All volunteers are issued with a high-visibility jacket featuring the Rural Mounted Volunteer logo, while their horses are equipped with reflective sheets and leg wrappings.

I look forward to seeing the scheme expand and encourage anyone with a horse who wants to support police in their communities to get involved. This is just one more weapon in the armoury when it comes to taking the fight to the criminals who plague our countryside.

If you are interested in becoming a Rural Mounted Volunteer please email: contact.vol@dorset.pnn.police.uk


David Sidwick
Dorset Police and Crime Commissioner





Message Sent By:
Dorset Police & Crime Commissioner






October 11

Dorset PCC joins forces with Dorset Council to discourage speeding



Dorset Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) has worked with Dorset Council to bring in a 12-month road safety sign trial which launches today.

The commissioner has funded the new information signs that will be placed around North Dorset to combat speeding in villages.

The trial comes after numerous speed complaints from North Dorset residents and will be carried out in up to ten village locations where no other measures, such as speed cameras are currently in place.

PCC, David Sidwick said: “This trial comes as a direct result of Dorset residents telling me of their concerns around speeding in their villages. I have heard their concerns and I hope that these new signs will encourage road users to think about their speed and take more care on Dorset’s roads.”

“Road safety is a hugely important issue and any death on Dorset’s roads is a tragedy. When you decide to get in a car and speed you are putting your own and others' lives at risk. In Dorset, we have an excellent Community Speed Watch scheme and the police Road Safety team, both of whom work tirelessly to keep our roads safe. However, they cannot be everywhere. These signs will help to fill the gaps in villages where there are not other measures in place to combat speeding.”

Dorset PCC, Dorset Council and Dorset Police have developed the new ‘vivid’ signs for the trial in North Dorset. The signs are temporary signs which will act as a reminder to drivers to watch their speed through villages. BCP Council already have a similar sign in use.

Eligible areas will be selected to be part of the trial if they do not use electronic speed indicator devices or have mobile safety camera enforcement. The scheme requires there to be Dorset Council, Dorset Police and Parish Councillor support for a location to be selected.

Councillor Ray Bryan, Portfolio Holder for Highways, Travel and Environment, said: “We fully support this trial aimed at improving road safety within our local communities. We encourage our local parish and town councils in the north Dorset area which don’t currently have campaigns to reduce speeding, to contact Dorset Council Road Safety Team if they’d like to take part. We will review the pilot at the end of the trial period.

The group hope that the signs will help to reduce speeding and hope parish councils will evaluate the success of the scheme through pre and post speed surveys. The trial is supported by Dorset Council as well as the Dorset Road Safety Partnership.


David Sidwick
Dorset Police and Crime Commissioner





Message Sent By:
Dorset Police & Crime Commissioner




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Dorset Police recognises its officers, staff, and volunteers at awards event

Chief Constable Amanda Pearson presented awards to several teams for their outstanding contribution towards meeting the Force's responsibility to achieve the Government's target of recruiting an additional 20,000 police officers.

The event, which took place on Monday, 2 October, provided an opportunity to recognise the remarkable work they have done to deliver the Police Uplift Programme, enabling the Force to put more officers into frontline policing roles.
Chief Constable Amanda Pearson said: "It truly was a privilege to celebrate the exceptional work everyone has achieved over the past three years.

Since 2019, Dorset Police has recruited 552 officers, all through the new entry routes, the Police Constable Degree Apprenticeship, the Degree Holder Entry Programme, and the Detective Degree Holder Entry Programme.

“This recruitment is the highest level ever undertaken, alongside introducing the entry routes, demonstrating exceptional flexibility and a 'can-do' attitude from all departments and teams across Dorset Police.”

View full article here: https://news.dorset.police.uk/news-article/817eb6b6-b866-ee11-9d5b-6045bdd24049



Message Sent By:
Julie Heath
(Dorset Police, Neighbourhood Alert Officer, Dorset)




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NCA investigation launched after drugs found off south coast of England

The National Crime Agency has begun an investigation following the recovery of a significant quantity of what is thought to be cocaine from the coast of Dorset and Hampshire.

Holdalls containing hundreds of kilos of powder were discovered in the sea off the St Aldhelm’s point and Durdle Door areas in Purbeck. And earlier today a further quantity washed up on a beach on the Isle of Wight.

The initial find was made on Monday 2 October 2023 by a fisherman who alerted Dorset Police. The packages are currently being examined to confirm their contents and quantity.

The investigation is being supported by Border Force, Dorset Police and Hampshire Police.

NCA senior investigating officer Tracey Lake said: “We believe this a significant amount of class A drugs which would have originated in South America. A loss of a consignment of this size would represent a significant hit to the criminal networks involved.

“Our investigation is being assisted by both Dorset and Hampshire Police as well as Border Force. Any additional suspect packages encountered by members of the public should be reported to the relevant Police force”

Deputy Chief Constable Rachel Farrell, of Dorset Police, said: “Officers from our marine team, supported by colleagues from across the Force and HM Coastguard have been working tirelessly with the NCA and Border Force to recover these suspect packages.

“Searches remain ongoing and I would ask anyone who finds a holdall or similar package in suspect circumstances to please not touch the item, but contact Dorset Police immediately.

“We remain committed to joining forces with our partner agencies to relentlessly pursue criminals and organised gangs suspected of being involved in drug supply offences so that we can keep the public safe.”

Hampshire and Isle of Wight Constabulary’s ACC Stuart Murray said: "We have been supporting the ongoing investigation with searches across the West Wight today, after a number of packages were discovered this morning by a group who were out litter picking.

"This work is ongoing, and you will continue to see police throughout the evening and into tomorrow, and we would ask anyone who finds any suspicious bags or packages on the coastline of Hampshire and the Island to get in touch with us immediately.

"There is a member of the litter picking group, a man in his 60s, who we want to make contact with as we continue to speak with everyone in the vicinity this morning, and we would ask him to get in touch with him. He is of slim build, around 5ft 6ins tall and had short grey hair, with a birth mark on the right side of his mouth.

"Anyone who does locate any suspicious packages should call 999, with our call handlers able to provide further advice."

"Working with the National Crime Agency and our other partners, we will continue to do all we can to protect the safety of our communities across Hampshire and the Isle of Wight and make life as difficult as possible for those taking part in criminal activity."






Message Sent By:
Julie Heath
(Dorset Police, Neighbourhood Alert Officer, Dorset)



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Trust & the Internet

Dear resident,

The internet’s unequalled choice, 24/7 convenience and flexibility are benefits that suit people of all ages, wherever they live or work and whatever their circumstances. Others, however, prefer to carry on doing things the traditional, offline way for many reasons, a major one being trust. We’ve all either experienced at first hand or heard about negative experiences including online fraud or abuse which are, unfortunately, all too commonplace.

In order to go online with safety and confidence, it’s important to get to know who and what you can trust … and who and what you can’t. And it’s vital that everybody who uses the internet can do so with safety and confidence – regardless of gender, ability, appearance, background or beliefs – by being able to trust others’ behaviour and behave responsibly themselves.

For more information about the internet and trust please read our latest advice here: https://www.getsafeonline.org/trust/

And if you would like to learn more, then please feel free to join our hour-long webinar tomorrow afternoon at 2pm where Get Safe Online will be joined by Neighbourhood Watch, the British Polio Fellowship, and DeafBlindUk to talk about the internet, trust and inclusivity in more detail. To register visit: https://www.getsafeonline.org/you-the-internet-and-trust-webinar/

The Get Safe Online team




Message Sent By:
Get Safe Online





October 10

Continuing to Fix the Future for a Safer Dorset



This week, I was delighted to launch round two of my Fix the Future Community Fund. Enforcement alone cannot combat the crimes affecting our communities. To truly tackle the root cause, we must also have clear prevention and education pathways. The Fix the Future Fund aims to help create more prevention and diversion schemes across Dorset by supporting projects and initiatives which will benefit young people and their local community.

We have some great young people in Dorset, but we also have some who may get into trouble or start being involved in crime and ASB. This fund is about offering opportunities for those young people at risk to do something different.

The first round of the fund was hugely successful with over £40,000 being awarded to nine community projects across Dorset. Earlier in the year I went to visit some of the funded projects and was impressed with the impact they are having not just on the young people involved but on the wider community.

In Sherborne, Future Roots received funding for a youth outreach project that sees staff patrol hotspots where young people hang out, acting as a friendly face and a deterrent to bad behaviour. I spoke to two local supermarkets that are visited as part of the patrols and both reported seeing a decrease in incidents of ASB and abuse towards staff since the outreach programme launched. (You can find out more about this project in the video here.)

I also visited the Andrew Simpson Foundation Centre at Portland Sailing Academy, where funding was used to launch a Maritime Education Project in partnership with Compass Learning Centre. The project saw at-risk young people develop new skills, build confidence, and learn about career opportunities in the Maritime industry, opening up their future options by offering practical experiences. The Compass Learning Centre deputy head teacher told me that he’d seen an improvement in students’ behaviour both in and outside of school as a result of the project. (You can find out more about this project in
the video here.)

These are just two examples out of the nine projects funded through the first round and I am eager to see more great projects supported across Dorset. That’s why I am pleased to say that applications are now, once again, open for community groups and organisations to bid for funding for projects and initiatives that reflect the needs of younger people, give them development opportunities, add value to the community and ultimately, make Dorset a safer place to live.

Applications from £100 up to £5,000 are welcomed, the projects must meet the funding criteria and have a local focus. The fund is particularly aimed at helping those from deprived or isolated areas. So, if you are a charity or local project and you fit the criteria – I would encourage you to bid for funding. Together, we can Fix the Future and make our county safer for everyone.

Find out more: https://www.dorset.pcc.police.uk/working-in-partnership/fix-the-future-fund/


David Sidwick
Dorset Police and Crime Commissioner





Message Sent By:
Dorset Police & Crime Commissioner






October 5, 2023


Help us make Dorset #NoPlaceForDrugs

Dorset Police is appealing to local communities to continue to report suspected drug-related crime and activity to the Force via a new intelligence portal so offenders can be targeted and communities safeguarded.

Drug-related crime and other associated offences, including theft and violence, has a significant impact on communities and tackling them remains a force priority.

Every year the Force takes action to disrupt individuals and criminal gangs who have been directly linked to illegal drug activity as a direct result of information and intelligence received from the public.

View full article here: https://news.dorset.police.uk/news-article/453a3a6f-0262-ee11-9d5b-6045bdd24049

Assistant Chief Constable Mark Callaghan, from Dorset Police, said: “I would like to thank the public, including our business communities, for coming forward and reporting information about drug-related activity to us.

“The public of Dorset are our eyes and ears and our ability to bring criminals to justice and combat crime is greatly enhanced by the information and intelligence they provide us. If something doesn’t feel right, quite often it isn’t so please trust your instincts and tell us what you know.

“To make it even easier for the public to come forward, we have created an intelligence portal on our website www.dorset.police.uk. Every piece of information and intelligence has a value so if you have seen or heard something that you think we should know about, please come forward.

“The information and identity of anyone reporting intelligence to us is protected, but if you aren’t comfortable talking directly to us, you can report anything anonymously through our partners at Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.”

Every piece of intelligence that is received by Dorset Police helps to build a picture. Things may not be actioned immediately, but as more information and intelligence is gathered, it helps to build a picture which could lead to the police taking enforcement action, safeguarding a possible victim or identifying someone involved in crime.



Message Sent By:
Julie Heath
(Dorset Police, Neighbourhood Alert Officer, Dorset)





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