“STALKING AND HARASSMENT” COME TOP OF PENARTH’S CRIME STATISTICS

South Wales Police no longer bother with illegally-parked vehicles  – but now deal with the new crime of “Stalking and Harassment” – and investigate complaints about comments made on social media

There have been 28 reported cases of “Stalking and Harassment” within in Penarth in the last 2 months of 2018 – putting this type of offence at the top of the table of local crimes – town councillors heard last night.

It’s not possible to compare the figures for “Stalking and Harassment” with the same period last year as no data for this  type of crime was collected under this heading  in previous years.

Inspector Andrew Rice of Penarth Police Station

Inspector Andrew Rice, who is in charge of  policing in Penarth and the Vale of Glamorgan, told Penarth Town Council that it had been a “fairly uneventful couple of months” .

There had been 91 crimes [of all categories] committed in the town in November – 1 fewer than the same period last year. (In the South Wales Police area as a whole, a total of  9,339 crimes were  reported in November).

In December, there had been 92 offences committed in Penarth – 4 fewer than in the same period last year. (There were 8,109 crimes reported across the whole of South Wales in December)  He said Penarth remained a “very low crime area” in comparison with the rest of South Wales .

However Inspector Rice said he preferred to look at the overall level of crime in the town throughout the year – which, he said “isn’t such a good story” . Over the full 12 months of 2018 there had been an increase of 109 in the total number of offences committed in Penarth compared with 2017. That represented a rise of 13%.  and was in line with a UK-wide rise in crime. Inspector Rice said “It’s not good news – but it’s not a disaster either”. 

Following 3 rape investigations in October 2018 – Penarth Council was last night informed about a  new  investigation – in November 2018 – which “technically” was also a rape.

The offence of “Rape” which had been recorded in November’s figures  was, he said ,“not a rape” – although “technically it was”. Giving the background, Inspector Rice explained “It’s a girl who is under the age of consent and who was in the Care System, who was engaged in sexual activity with a male known to her. She would not disclose to us who that individual was. ” Inspector Rice said  that “technically this was a crime on behalf of the male” – but he did not want to create the fear that  it was ” a stranger-rape or anything like that. It’s not a general threat to the public”.

Cllr Martin Turner (Conservative Plymouth Ward)

Noting the the appearance of “Stalking and Harassment” in the statistics, Cllr Martin Turner (Conservative Plymouth Ward) said “I’m not quite clear what this offence is”  .

Inspector Rice said “Stalking and Harassment” used to be included in the  “Violence without Injury” category   . These were offences under the “Harassment Act” which could “range from quite serious matters of domestic abuse – and strangers stalking somebody they become infatuated with – to some very minor issues where somebody’s posted something on Facebook or social media – which gets recorded as a crime.”  He said the majority of such cases  would be of the “less serious” category.  Inspector Rice confirmed to Cllr Turner that such incidents  WERE being recorded as “crimes” and much of this would be “internet based” .

Inspector Andrew Rice of Penarth Police

Inspector Rice said “We get a lot of reports from members of the public  about stuff on  social media that they don’t like . If they ring up and say they don’t like it, or find it offensive or find it harassing,  it is recorded as a crime“. Inspector Rice said the Home Office Rules require that anything that someone reports as a crime is recorded as a “crime” – and remains as a “crime” until or unless the police investigate it and find that it is not a crime.

Cllr Turner asked whether more information could be provided as to just what was now being regarded as “Stalking and Harassment”  – and observed that the police list of  the various crime categories “seemed to change quite frequently”.   He noted that the category of “Domestic Violence now seemed to have disappeared from the list . [ PDN Note: Former Penarth councillor Janice Birch had pressed South Wales Police  for years to include this category in local crime – which they eventually did. It has now disappeared]. 

Pressing home his point, Cllr Turner said that last year councillors had been looking at an increase in “domestic violence per se”  and were asking for figures “to try to understand   whether there was a problem or not”.

Inspector Rice asgreed that there was a  problem with domestic abuse and said there were domestic elements in a number of crime categories such as “Stalking/Harassment”  or “Violence Without Injury”  . He said “In some ways an increase in that is an encouraging  thing because it means victims are more comfortable to come forward and report those matters”. 

Cllr Gary Allman (Conservative St Augustines)

Cllr Gary Allman  (Conservative St Augustines) noted problems reported by a constituent regarding  lorries parking on pavements at Tesco Express near the HSBC Bank . He also thanked Inspector Rice for the work done on speeding in Penarth Marina and the presence of a police speed camera on Terra Nova Way . Constituents in the Marina had asked him whether they could put their own 30 mph speed-limit signs  up.

Inspector Rice said he did not think residents could put speed-limit signs up on the highway unless they were approved by the Highway Authority.

This car crashed into a lamp-post and caught fire on Terra Nova Way in 2014

On the Marina speeding issue Inspector Rice said he would have having a meeting with Mike Clogg of the Vale of Glamorgan Council at the end of the month – however there was, he said, “no history of injury and collisions” on Terra Nova Way .

He did not think Terra Nova Way was long enough for an average-speed camera to work  – a static speed camera would be “more appropriate”. However he noted that where there is evidence of speeding and a community convern there are occasions where a camera can be installed.  Of 100 vehicles speed-checked earlier this month 14 had been exceeding the speed limit.

Inspector Rice introduced his colleague Samantha Johnson who will be dealing with  traffic policing matters. Inspector Rice  told councillors that South Wales Police no longer deal with matters such as parking on double-yellow lines which are now the exclusive preserve of Vale of Glamorgan Council traffic enforcement officers. They can, however, still deal with anyone  parking on  pedestrian crossing zig-zags.

CRIME STATiSTICS FOR NOVEMBER AND DECEMBER 2018

  • Violence with Injury November 7 December  17
  • Violence without injury November 7 December 21
  • Stalking and Harassment November 18 December  10
  • Rape November 1 December 0
  • Other serious sexual offences  November 2 December  0
  • Robbery November 0 December  0
  • Residential Burglary November 4 December
  • Business and community burglary November 1 December 0
  • Vehicle offences November 5 December  7
  • Shoplifting November 9 December 6
  •  Bicycle theft November 1 December 2
  • Shoplifting November 9 December 6
  • All other theft offences November 11 December 2
  • Criminal damage November 10 December  11
  • Possession of Drugs November 2 December  0
  • Public order offences November 10 December  10
  • Miscellaneous crimes against society November 4 December 1

 

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Penarth Daily News email address dmj@newsnet.uk . Penarth Daily News is an independent free on-line fair and balanced news service published by NewsNet Ltd covering the town of Penarth in the Vale of Glamorgan, Wales, UK. All our news items are based on the information we receive or discover at the time of publication and are published on the basis that they are accurate to the best of our knowledge and belief at that time. Comments posted on the site by commentators reflect their opinions and are not necessarily shared, endorsed or supported by Penarth Daily News.
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10 Responses to “STALKING AND HARASSMENT” COME TOP OF PENARTH’S CRIME STATISTICS

  1. Andrew Worsley says:

    Oh! dear, oh! dear , oh! dear………………………

  2. Andrew Worsley says:

    Oh! dear, oh! dear I realise its Winter but I didn’t expect to find easily on here if we are to take in certain details of this report. And may I congratulate the Councillor at the back of the room asking for clarity or indeed some explanation on what exactly this ‘ harassment and stalking ‘ refers to, I applaud you Sir , even though I don’t wear your Parties colours . As for he rest I withhold my judgment . WHISPERED FROM THE WINGS, ” Psst Andrew remember your on about Policing in this area ”
    Thank you Derek , now if I may continue with my contribution on this topic, despite Penarth being a ‘hot bed’ for malicious gossips , bigots and ignorant so so’s , it appears these people can ‘give it’ but cannot take it. The result turns out to be Harassment and Stalking makes the top of the crime list. And one wonders who is setting the criteria with regards as to what is Stalking and Harassment , how often etc etc . We on this forum remember ‘ Operation Galatica’ the comedic name chosen for investigating car theft in Penarth Marina, then up pops a spokeperson to say “we don’t choose the names the computer does” and I suppose it programs itself too ???? nice try .
    We know the so called Hobby Bobbies are shoved on the street to cut down on anti social behaviour in fact they are only schooled in that or so it appears , even then they get it wrong and try to ‘make up’ some cockeyed offence , and is it the Polices job to worry about posts on Facebook that some wet lettuce took offence to ? ( and I don’t mean children , as that is an offence). I mentioned a PSCO thinking chalking on the pavement was an ‘ offence ‘ when it clearly isn’t (remember the poor training bit?) . To illustrate this further , there was a case some time ago in another town were an ignorant and over zealous , nutcase of a PSCO upset a group of young children because they were playing a game of Hopscotch on the pavement near their homes and had chalked a grid and he told them chalking on the footpath wasn’t allowed , the little girl was especially upset , we don’t want half train , backward , little Hitlers going round the country , making up their own stupid and petty little offences , just so they can write something in their little book to earn a gold star.

  3. Andrew Worsley says:

    the word missing in the opening above was Snowflakes .

  4. Dogtanian says:

    ◾Miscellaneous crimes against society November 4 December 1
    I wonder if the above – the last in the list – refers to that Labrador who did a wee on Tower Hill?
    Or was the dog released without charge in the end?

  5. Harry Parfitt says:

    Offensive and harassing posts online. That sounds familiar.

    • Hello Mr Pot, My name's Mr Kettle says:

      Ar yes, the shallow tittle-tittle which compels you to return, again and again and again.

      • Harry Parfitt says:

        Whereas you attempt conceal your identity behind an array of silly aliases.

      • Hello Mr Pot, My name's Mr Kettle says:

        As I said, again and again and again – on this occasion to leave your own ‘offensive and harassing’ post.
        And what is your alias if not silly?
        Would you prefer I call myself Trevor Ford?

  6. Andrew Worsley says:

    Dogtanian the dog was cautioned if the local gossips are to be believed , and if your a PSCO in Penarth and its your main source of information (as it is) .

  7. Andrew Worsley says:

    Wonder when they are going to get around to ‘Thought Crime ‘ as in 1984 and practiced it seems by some corrupt regimes………….. bound to happen soon! …………..and I don’t mean internet trolling.

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