‘Proactive’ officers praised as crime rates are reduced

PSNI officers and young people from Castle Boxing Club prior to a paintballing session in Bray, Dublin.  INCT 34-730-CON
PSNI officers and young people from Castle Boxing Club prior to a paintballing session in Bray, Dublin. INCT 34-730-CON

A reduction in burglary and criminal damage rates in the Carrickfergus borough has been welcomed by the local policing partnership.

The figures were highlighted at the latest meeting of the Carrickfergus Policing and Community Safety Partnership (PCSP) on August 13, at which the PSNI presented its Report on the Carrickfergus Policing Plan.

Efforts by local officers to engage with young people in the community were also highlighted at the meeting.

PCSP chairperson Councillor Noel Williams said: “I commend the PSNI for their recent successes. Burglary rates have been reduced by almost 13 percent against the same period last year and incidents of criminal damage are down by almost 4 percent.”

Inspector Martin Ruddy briefed the policing committee of his officers’ proactive work in local communities, engaging with residents and building relationships with young people.

As part of the outreach, officers recently took part in a paintballing session in Bray, County Dublin with several members of Castle Boxing Club.

Inspector Ruddy said: “The PSNI Carrickfergus Neighbourhood Team is committed to community policing and working in partnership with people within their own locality.

“We have already been involved in the E-hoops Programme - an innovative youth community project where 16- 24 year olds experiencing educational, economic and social deprivation come together through a sport, education and personal development programme - in several parts of the borough.

“We are also keen to develop linkages with the Bytes Project, which aims to remove individual barriers to training and employment by assisting young people to overcome extreme social and educational disadvantage so they can make a difference in their lives.

“This enables them to become economically active and make a positive contribution to their communities.

“Officers from the Neighbourhood Team recently participated in cross-border team building activities with young people from Castle Boxing Club and are keen to continue the relationship over the coming months.”

Councillor Williams, who took over as chairperson of the partnership earlier this year, added: “I am pleased with the efforts of the PSNI locally to reduce crime, particularly in a climate of budget cuts.

“Moreover, members of the PCSP also asked that police attention be focused on a number of areas were more progress could be made.

“The PCSP is committed to working in partnership with the PSNI and local communities to ensure effective Neighbourhood Policing throughout the borough of Carrickfergus.

“I would encourage members of the public to report suspicious incidents and to embrace the service offered on the PSNI’s non-emergency number 101.”