The assistant chief constable of Lincolnshire Police says people must be vigilant and report any suspicious acitivity as the threat of a terrorist attack remains high following last night’s bombing in Manchester.
Assistant Chief Constable Paul Gibson said: “We are truly horrified and saddened at the events in Manchester last night. I know I can speak for the whole of Lincolnshire Police in extending our deepest condolences and support to all those involved, as well as to our colleagues in Manchester.
“Any event like this has a ripple effect, not just in shared grief but understandably in concern about if something like this could happen locally. We are very aware that people might feel anxious about if an attack like this could take place in Lincolnshire; we are closely monitoring the situation here and will respond accordingly. At the moment our position is unchanged in the county, policing is being delivered according to our normal routine, and we will be constantly assessing that in light of the events in Manchester.”
Twenty two people are known to have died in the suicide bomb attack at Manchester Arena last night soon after a concert by American singer Ariana Grande.
Mr Gibson added: “Following last night’s incident, we are taking the opportunity to ensure our staff and officers patrol safely and remain vigilant. The national threat remains severe (an attack is highly likely) and therefore it is important that all of our communities similarly remain vigilant and report any suspicious activity that gives cause for concern.
“As part of the ACT (Action Counters Terrorism) campaign we are asking for help from the public to help tackle terrorism and report suspicious activity. Act on your instincts, if you see anything you think is suspicious please don’t hesitate to contact police. I’d like to echo the ‘be alert, not alarmed’ message and ask you pick up the phone or talk to us however you can if something seems out of place to you.”
PC Rizwaan Chothia, of East Midlands Special Operations Unit for Counter Terrorism in Lincolnshire, said: “Our thoughts are with all those affected by the tragic events in Manchester last night. Violence like this has no place in our society and we continually work with communities and partners to try and stop horrific incidents like this taking place. Part of that work is a focus on the government’s counter terrorism strategy which includes Prevent. This aims to stop people becoming terrorists or supporting terrorism. If we can spot the signs where someone might be being radicalised we can intervene at an early stage and safeguard individuals without criminalising them. We can only do this with the on-going support of our communities and other organisations that we work with.”
Call Lincolnshire Police on 101 or 999 in an emergency, or Greater Manchester Police with any information about last night’s incidents. For more information on what to look out for and how to contact police can be found at www.gov.uk/ACT or call by calling police confidentially on 0800 789321.