I start this month’s blog with some good news…. Burglaries have significantly reduced by 60% in Torfaen during July compared to the previous months of May and June. Several people have been charged with a significant number of offences whilst others remain under investigation. A 39 year old man from Pontnewydd in Cwmbran has also been sentenced to 23 months in prison for committing a series of burglaries in the area.
Gavin Meacham, a 32 year old prolific shoplifter from the Cwmbran area has received a Criminal Behaviour Order at Court this month, with conditions that will restrict anti-social behaviour and stop him entering Cwmbran Shopping Centre.
One of my aims when I first arrived in Torfaen was to reduce demand on frontline officers to allow them greater freedom to focus more on those individuals who affect the quality of life within our communities. Through the introduction of several local processes and staff movement, demand is beginning to reduce which, in turn, is allowing officers to be even more proactive. During July, officers have carried out four drugs warrants based on information from the local community. This resulted in eight arrests, the discovery of a cannabis cultivation and substantial quantities of drug seizures. I will not tolerate drug misuse within our community and will always look to undertake enforcement to address the needs of the community.
The team has also had a welcomed injection of new blood with the arrival of PCs Kevin Eyles, Greg Kidner, Kyle Taylor and, soon to arrive, Lana Rees. They have joined a challenging but vibrant area and I wish them the very best in their new roles.
During a recent Inspector’s meeting held in Ystrad Mynach, a commendation ceremony was held to highlight and reward officer’s good work. It was noticeable that a significant number of candidates receiving awards were those working in Torfaen as listed below:
PCs Lowri James and Joss Evans for the professionalism shown in dealing with an collision involving multiple casualties, in difficult and distressing conditions.
CSOs Zahid Rouf and David Reynolds for the teamwork displayed in identifying and detaining suspects in a burglary.
PCs Rich Kelly, Matt Brustad, David Brice and Daniel Palmer for the initiative and determination shown in the arrest of three prolific offenders.
PC Laura Redwood for demonstrating excellent communication skills in dealing with a vulnerable, but aggressive detainee in custody.
Congratulations and well done to all involved!
Towards the end of the month I had the opportunity to meet the local MP Nick Thomas-Symonds to discuss local crime and policing in the area, including topical areas of violent crime, cyber crime, and the management of off-road biking. This was a really constructive meeting and I look forward to working together in the future to help keep Torfaen safe.