May 03 2013

Harrow Police’s Weekly Blog – May 3, 2013

police_lantern_2-150x150Harrow Police’s weekly blog, written this week by Borough Commander Simon Ovens…

Last weekend we took part in Operation Condor, a met-wide operation focusing on licensed premises and supporting our communities who use them. Over the two-day period we visited 37 bookmakers, 77 off-licences and 45 public houses. The licensees were very supportive of our visits and as a result, we identified people responsible for assaults, theft and anti-social behaviour. Our particular focus was around the Wealdstone area where there has been reports of anti-social behaviour. Officers from the Mounted Branch were working alongside us and there was a reduction in crime over the two-day operation. As a direct result of the extra policing, over the weekend, we arrested 19 people.

We arrested a twelve-year-old boy for the second time in three weeks, for robbery this week. On this occasion he robbed a girl of her phone but was quickly identified by police the same day. After being in custody for several hours, we charged him with the offence and he went to Brent Magistrates Court on Tuesday 30 April. Whilst it is unfortunate that such a young person is out there committing serious crime, we will hold those responsible and accountable for robbery offences and protect other young members of our community. It is also very important that young people understand there are serious consequences in taking other people’s property which can amount to robbery charges and custodial sentences.

[pullquote align=”right” textalign=”left|center|right” width=”30%”]”Our particular focus was around the Wealdstone area…”[/pullquote]

PCSO Robert Chidgey of Greenhill Safer Neighbourhoods team and PCSO Suzanne Keys of Harrow Town Team never forget a face. They were handing out crime prevention leaflets recently in the Town Centre when they spotted a man they recognised as being wanted for harassment and failing to appear at court. The PCSOs detained the man until police officers arrived to arrest him. Well done to those two officers for their sharp observation skills.

Last week two men, claiming they were from a water company tricked an elderly woman into handing over £600 in cash. The men visited the woman’s home the previous day informing her that work was soon to start in her street; they took her phone number saying that they would call to let her know when. The following day the men called asking for £1,800 to pay for a pump which they would need to install so that water could be pumped into her home. The woman told them she didn’t have that kind of money, however with their persistence she was eventually persuaded into handing over £600 in cash.

Unfortunately this is not the first time we have had reports of this crime type and certainly won’t be the last. These criminals prey on the most vulnerable and elderly members of our community for their own gain. What we need to do is to raise awareness of bogus workmen and their methods to prevent the elderly and most vulnerable members of our community falling into the hands of these unscrupulous criminals.

For more information on bogus callers visit our website – see related links.

There has been a few recent thefts of bank cards where people, withdrawing money from cash machines, have been distracted by criminals. Please remember to be vigilant when withdrawing money from an ATM; remember to cover the keypad when inputting your PIN. If possible, use cash machines inside the banks so that anyone intent on acting in a criminal manner can easily be identified by CCTV cameras.

I attended a thanksgiving service at Harrow Central Mosque honouring the Mayor of Harrow councillor Nizam Ismail’s year of service. I met many members of the community and look forward to many more planned community events over the coming months.

Following an appeal on Crimewatch last week about an attack in Wealdstone last February, we charged a 31-year-old man with grievous bodily harm with intent, and possession of an offensive weapon. Thank you to everyone who assisted us with this appeal and came forward with information

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