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Shropshire town reinforces commitment to target thieves

Newport has become the latest town to reinforce its commitment to target thieves by signing up to West Mercia Police's We Don't Buy Crime.

We Don't Buy Crime, supported by West Mercia Police and Crime Commissioner John Campion, is the force's response to tackling serious acquisitive crime which includes crimes such as burglary and theft.

Since 2015 more than 50 towns and villages have signed up to become We Don't Buy Crime areas with more than 30,000 homes across Worcestershire, Herefordshire, Shropshire and Telford & Wrekin protected with SmartWater forensic technology.

And, thanks to a commitment from Newport Town Council We Don't Buy Crime is now being rolled out across the town with local residents encouraged to sign up and mark their property.

A key aspect of We Don't Buy Crime is to advertise the town has been protected with SmartWater and signage will be displayed throughout the area warning thieves the town has taken crime prevention measures.

Local Policing Commander for Telford & Wrekin, including Newport, Superintendent Tom Harding, is also the force's lead on We Don't Buy Crime.

He said: "As the local commander for Telford & Wrekin I'm incredibly proud to lead policing in Newport. The town is a great market town and it's my pleasure to help make it a town people are proud to live and work in.

"I know that, similar to many other rural towns, rural crime is a concern and am pleased to announce Newport has signed up to become a We Don't Buy Crime town.

"Over the past few years I have led West Mercia Police's response to tackle burglary and high value thefts across the force. Being broken into has a devastating impact on victims and I want to make sure we're doing all we can to help protect our local communities.

"Crime prevention plays an important role which is why I really would encourage residents to mark and register their property. Warwick University has carried out research for us in areas that have already become We Don't Buy Crime towns and villages and the research has shown there have been significant reductions in crime so we're satisfied it is effective.

"By working together we can really start to turn the tables on criminals and let them know there's no place for their criminality in our communities."

Police and Crime Commissioner John Campion said: "I promised the communities of West Mercia that I would do all I can to prevent them from becoming victims of crime. Funding Smartwater is just one of the ways I am delivering on that promise, so I am pleased that Newport has become the latest town to be protected.

"Across West Mercia we have already seen great successes with Smartwater proving to work and many people that have used it, and are now living in a 'We Don't Buy Crime' town, are feeling more reassured and have commented on how there is now a more enhanced community spirit.

"I hope to see more areas sign up to the 'We Don't Buy Crime' scheme so we can all help in reducing crime and making our communities safer."

Councillor Tim Nelson from Newport Town Council said he is delighted with the take up of the free SmartWater kits provided by Newport Town Council in partnership with West Mercia Police.

He added: "Newport Town Council is pleased to welcome local policing commander Superintendent Tom Harding and West Mercia Police and Crime Commissioner John Campion to Newport for this official launch of We Don't Buy Crime and SmartWater. I'm personally particularly pleased that we now have the official launch since local volunteers, who I would like to thank, have been distributing kits for the past two months and have now handed out 1300 kits, which is a third of the town. This is fantastic so far and there are many more to go."

Kits are available at drop in session at Newport Library, please see Newport town council for details. Volunteers are also taking kits out to local events, visiting local shops and local schools to encourage people to sign up.

SmartWater is a water based invisible liquid, provided by local company - SmartWater Technology - and transfers onto anything it comes into contact with, including skin and clothing.

It is only visible under an ultra-violet light, meaning those who come into contact with it are often unaware - and even if they are aware it does not wash off easily and stays on the skin for weeks.

SmartWater scientists only need a speck to identify where it has come from and it can be used on anything from a door handle, window frame or even smaller personal possessions.


Published 23/11/18