Launch of Swindon Town Centre 'Christmas Shopping' policing operation

Operation Dasher 2014

December 2014 sees Swindon Town Centre Neighbourhood Police Team (NPT) launch Operation Dasher. This operation begins on Saturday 13 December and is dedicated to policing the town centre day time economy, including late night shopping, during the busy Christmas period.

The Operation forms one part of the Swindon Community Safety Partnership (CSP) Christmas Safety Campaign which launched on the 6th December. During the Christmas period the NPT will deploy a number of strategies that will include issuing crime prevention advice and increased high visibility and covert patrols. These efforts will be completed in partnership with the CSP, inSwindon, the town’s retailers, store security staff and licensed premises.

Inspector Paul Saunders, Central NPT said:

“Crime and anti social behaviour during the day time economy continue to remain relatively low. This is thanks to the shared responsibility and collective commitment of inSwindon, the retailers, town centre management, store security and the police. We continue to build upon these working relationships during the busy festive period when an increase in opportunistic crime can occur.

“Our aim is to ensure Swindon town centre remains a safe and pleasant place to visit. The Day Safe network is an invaluable resource and intelligence and real time information sharing assists us in both the prevention and detection of crime. Notably improvements to the town centre CCTV in recent months will prove helpful during this busy period”

PC Paul Bezzant Community Beat Manager said:

“Operation Dasher last year saw a notable reduction in acquisitive crime during the festive period; the town centre saw a reduction of 15% from the previous year. The team are certainly not complacent and we are more determined to build upon this success working closely with our partners.”

“We would also like to remind people about their own personal safety. At this time of year our thoughts are often focussed on all the festivities. Personal safety for some sadly is not at the forefront of their thought process.”

Below are a few simple tips to help prevent you not becoming a victim of crime whilst out and about during the Christmas period:
• When out shopping, keep your purse and handbag with you, do not leave it in your trolley or unattended
• Keep any cash that you may have on you to a minimum
• Mobile phones and wallets in back pockets are a target – ensure that you keep them secure and out of sight
• Be careful at cash machines and when paying with your card – shield your PIN at all times.
With increased numbers of shoppers on local streets, there are inevitably more vehicles in car parks which provide more opportunities for criminals. Don’t let your vehicle be an easy target by following the advice outlined below:
• Don’t leave Christmas presents or other valuables like laptops, mobile phones, handbags, credit cards or cheque books in your car. If it is unavoidable – place them in the boot and ensure equipment is completely switched off
• Remove Satellite Navigation systems and clean away suction marks on windows Make sure car doors, windows and sun roofs are all properly closed and locked
• Remove your stereo if you can – mark it with the vehicle registration number if you can’t
• Leave your glove box open to show that there is nothing in it
• Leave absolutely nothing on show – you may know that there is no wallet in your jacket, but a thief will break a window just to check.
• If you own a van, make sure you remove tools overnight and display an appropriate sign in the rear window making this clear.
If you are a victim of crime or want to report suspicious behaviour to police please call 999 or use the non-emergency number on 101. Alternatively, if you wish to remain anonymous call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.


Source:: Wiltshire Police News

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