Police patrolling on Windsor Rd Penarth in November – a month in which crime rose
Penarth Town Council was told last night that there has been a 30% increase in crime in the town – with the number of crimes rising from 54 in October 2014 to 71 in November 2014.
Briefing councillors and the current crime situation, Sergeant Ioan Jones of Penarth Police station reported large increases in the incidence of shoplifting and in theft from motor vehicles – plus an increase in crimes of violence.
The crimes reported in November are listed below with the figure for October in brackets alongside:-
- Burglary 6 (6)
- Criminal Damage 10 (11)
- Drugs 1 (2)
- Other offences 1 (2)
- Other Theft (mostly shoplifting) 22 (12)
- Sexual Offences 2 (2)
- Theft from Motor Vehicles 7 (3)
- Theft of Motor Vehicles 2 (0)
- Violence against the Person 20 (16)
The figures include 11 “domestic incidents” (7 in October) and 8 “assaults with injury” (5 in October) .
Sgt Ioan Jones of Penarth Police Station
Sergeant Jones told councillors that in the operation to clamp-down on shoplifting the use of the single phone number issued to retailers and pubs (the so-called “Batphone” carried by duty Police Community Support Officers) had been very successful in eliminating switchboard delay.
Sgt Jones said of the 12 shoplifting incidents reported in the period from December 1st to 6th , 8 had been “detected” and 3 people had been arrested and charged. Two suspects had been identified for other outstanding offences who were also linked to thefts in Whitchurch ,Cardiff. There had been a shoplifting case in WH Smiths in which a pen had been stolen.
Sgt Jones said that all the shoplifters came from the Cardiff area – none came from Barry or Penarth. He told councillors that in the same category of “other thefts” a female had been remanded and an outstanding suspect – a male – had been involved in making off without payment from filling stations and using stolen number plates in Dinas Powys and in the Tesco’s Penarth. The female, he said, had been charged. They had been what he described as a “two person crime wave“.
The filling station at Tesco Penarth where drivers wearing hoodies filled jerrycans with “free” petrol
Sgt Jones said the police had also had an “issue with Tesco’s” who were – he said – authorising the dispensing of fuel without looking to identify to whom they were serving the fuel – and were even permitting unidentified “customers” to fill their tank and then fill jerrycans in their boot.
The fuel thieves were wearing “hoodies” he said – and “not showing themselves” . At no time had Tesco stopped the fuelling. The supermarket has now been given “crime prevention advice”. The activities of this couple had been responsible for the majority of “other thefts” reported.
Sgt Jones said that there had been 17 more crimes in November compared with October. Burglary figures (6) were the same in both months . He told councillors that a “female” had been charged that very day (December 16th 2014 ) with ” a couple of those burglaries” in addition to burglaries committed in Cardiff. The alleged burglar’s partner was “still outstanding” – but believed to be in the Barry area.
Cllr Gwyn Roberts (Labour St Augustines)
Cllr Gwyn Roberts (Labour St Augustines) asked whether the increase in crime was “seasonal”. Sgt Jones said there did tend to be spikes in shoplifting and there had been one in the summer. Details of shoplifters seen in Penarth were sent to Cardiff where Cardiff officers often recognised “prolific shoplifters” who were not known by sight to Penarth officers. Shoplifters. he said. tended to go to areas where they were “not so well-known” by shops or local police.
Cllr Amber Courtney (Labour Stanwell)
Cllr Amber Courtney (Labour Stanwell) said the headteacher at Victoria Primary school had received a number of complaints from parents about “dangerous driving in the area around pick-up and drop-off times” . The problem extended to the Masonic Hall. The headteacher had asked if it was possible to have more police presence at key times. Sgt Jones said he would tell the local PCSOs.
Cllr Mark Wilson (Labour Stanwell)
Cllr Mark Wilson (Labour Stanwell) echoed Cllr Courtney’s remarks. Motorists were causing danger to small children and parents and he would appreciate action on this.
Cllr Neil Thomas (Labour Cornerswell)
Cllr Neil Thomas ( Labour Cornerswell) said when there were incidents of domestic violence this could have an impact on school children and their behavior . In Bridgend the police were informing the schools about such incidents [involving the families of pupils] but this was not happening in Penarth. He asked Sgt Jones to find out whether the local policy in Penarth could be changed.
Sgt Jones said information was shared with other agencies including education authorities and schools.
Cllr Rosemary Cook (Labour St Augustines)
Cllr Rosemary Cook (Labour St Augustines) told Sgt Jones about traffic problems outside a new nursery set up at Bethel Chapel in Plassey St
Cllr Rhiannon Birch (Labour Cornerswell)
Cllr Rhiannon Birch (Labour Cornerswell) highlighted double parking by lorries servicing Sainsbury’s and Kitchener and Thomas – and three delivery vans parked on the bus stop at Windsor Road. She was “quite concerned about the amount of very poor parking” . Tescos were also still coning off parking bays in Hickman Road not only to deliver but to take away material for recycling.
Cllr Roberts said he and his daughter one morning had witnessed the whole of Penarth being gridlocked by inconsiderate parking. More strict enforcement was needed he said.
The Mayor of Penarth Cllr Martin Turner (Conservative Plymouth Ward)
The Mayor of Penarth Cllr Turner (Conservative Plymouth Ward) suggested the police should write to the major retailers in the town about the problem.
Cllr Anthony Ernest (Conservative Plymouth Ward)
Cllr Anthony Ernest suggested the Vale Council should take action regarding adjustments in the waiting times at loading bays.
Cllr Clive Williams said that in France lorries were only allowed to deliver in the towns in the evenings.
Sgt Jones is now going to write to the major retailers to enlist their co-operation