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Police crackdown on criminals


3:33pm 18th March 2011

A new operation, designed to put pressure on regular offenders and cut crime in York, has made an instant impression.

Operation Lion, which began on Monday 14th March 2011, is already having a positive impact with a number of arrests for robbery, burglary, serious assault and drug offences, during the first week of the initiative.

Additional resources have been operating in the city centre and the Tang Hall, Hull Road and Westfield areas of York, to send out a clear message to known criminals that North Yorkshire Police are aware of their offending and will use all powers available to discourage their criminality.

Personal letters, regular visits to their homes and an increased police presence in their neighbourhoods have left offenders in no doubt that officers are watching them.

Assistant Chief Constable Tim Madgwick, of North Yorkshire Police, said:

“Operation Lion has produced some excellent results since the beginning of the week and I am confident that the good work will continue in the future.

“We have introduced extra resources into certain areas of York and regular offenders will be well aware that we have an eye on them and will be ready if they step out of line.

“Some good arrests have reinforced our intentions and this operation is not just about getting the message across to offenders but also making our communities aware that we are intent on putting a stop to people leading criminal lifestyles.”

Weekend patrols

Over this coming weekend, police will be focusing on the city centre as residents and visitors enjoy York’s nightlife.

Extra officers will be on patrol on Friday and Saturday night to ensure that disruption in the city centre is kept to a minimum and people can enjoy the city’s pubs, bars and restaurants peacefully and safely.

Police will be providing a visible presence in local nightspots to deter anti-social behaviour and remind revellers to keep a close eye on their belongings, particularly once they’ve had a drink.

Extra patrols will also continue in the city centre during daylight hours to ensure that shops and shoppers are protected from thieves.

ACC Madgwick added:

“York is a safe city and people come from all over the world to sight-see, shop and enjoy the nightlife. We want to encourage people to continue visiting the city and while most residents and visitors are well behaved, a small minority of people tend to cause disruption.

“We are intent on minimising that disruption and our officers will be highly-visible over the weekend to discourage violent behaviour, theft, anti-social behaviour, criminal damage and other offences which affect the quality of life for people in the city.”

The weekend will offer no respite to prolific offenders who will continue to be visited by officers as efforts to discourage criminal behaviour intensify."

Significant arrests

Police have made a number of good arrests this week as they take a firm approach to offenders in and around the city centre.

In the last 24 hours officers have arrested people suspected of assault, robbery and burglary.

* Three men were arrested last night (Thursday 17th March 2011) after a 23 year old man was assaulted at an address in Falsgrave Crescent.

The victim sustained a broken nose and substantial bruising when he was allegedly punched in the face and hit with a weapon during the incident.

Officers attended the property and detained a 35 year old man and two men in their 20s, who remain in police custody as enquiries continue.

* A 22 year old man and a 23 year old woman were arrested on suspicion of robbery after an incident on North Street, in the early hours of this morning (Friday 18th March 2011).

A 17 year old man was allegedly thrown to the ground and assaulted by the suspects who made off in the direction of BMP nightclub, with his phone.

CCTV operators helped to locate the suspects outside BPM. They were arrested by officers and the victim’s phone was recovered nearby.

The suspects remain in custody as investigations into the incident continue.

* At around 2am on Thursday 18th March 2011, police received reports of a burglary at a house in Baker Street.

Officers attended and found the property with a smashed window. They conducted an area search with the assistance of a police dog and located two men nearby, carrying electrical goods.

The suspects, aged 30 and 20, were arrested on suspicion of burglary and have been released on police bail as enquiries continue.

Bad week for shop thieves

Officers have also seen a dramatic decrease in shop theft in the city centre during the first week of the operation.

Extra patrols have been deployed to offer a high-visibility presence and provide assistance to store detectives and shop managers in a bid to cut theft from local businesses.

During this week there have only been four shop thefts in the whole of the city centre; two on Monday (14th March), none on Tuesday, two on Wednesday, followed by another theft-free day on Thursday.

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