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Top cop pledges ‘robust’ response to violent crime in Lincolnshire




Lincolnshire Police Chief Constable Neil Rhodes and Coun Stephen Woodliffe at the relaunch of Operation NOVA.
Lincolnshire Police Chief Constable Neil Rhodes and Coun Stephen Woodliffe at the relaunch of Operation NOVA.

Lincolnshire Police Chief Constable Neil Rhodes has promised a “swift and robust” response to domestic and street violence at the relaunch of a countywide campaign.

Mr Rhodes gave his backing to Operation NOVA, which stands for Say NO to Violence and Abuse, at the same time as a series of posters printed in the four most common eastern European languages were unveiled to support the campaign.

Police patrols will be stepped up in town centres, including Spalding, Bourne, Market Deeping and Bourne, over the festive period to deal with any alcohol-related violence, disorder or domestic abuse in the home.

Mr Rhodes said: “Additional sergeants and full police constables will be on patrol in town centres to reassure people, prevent crime and disorder and to step in swiftly and robustly if anything does take place.

“Alongside of that, because a good deal of the violence we do see occurs in people’s homes, we want to send a very clear message out that we will not accept that and we are there to support the victims of violent crime, whether it is on the street or in their own homes.

“Across the county, we have seen a small increase on violent crime (up 7.8 per cent in April 2014-March 2015 compared to the same period last year, according to the Lincolnshire Police and Crime Commissioner’s annual report of 2014-15) so we want people to be reassured.

Lincolnshire remains one of the safest counties in the country to live, work and visit, so we are determined to tackle violence and offer reassurance that individuals are less likely to become victims of violent crime here than in other areas of the country
Lincolnshire Police Chief Constable Neil Rhodes

“Lincolnshire remains one of the safest counties in the country to live, work and visit, so we are determined to tackle violence and offer reassurance that individuals are less likely to become victims of violent crime in this county than in other areas of the country.”

Operation NOVA will be led by neighbourhood police teams across Lincolnshire, including South Holland, Stamford (which includes Bourne and the Deepings) and Boston.

Chief Superintendent Paula Wood, East Area Commander for South Holland, Boston and East Lindsey, said: “There is no excuse for violent or abusive behaviour and anyone who acts in that way will be dealt with accordingly by our officers.

“There are a number of aspects to this campaign and one of them, in a long-running initiative with partners, has been to tackle alcohol-driven crime and anti-social behaviour.

“I have made no secret of the fact that some parts of the county have issues of this nature and we continue to work hard in trying to address them. “We want to ensure that we have dialogue with our communities and, thefore, we urge anyone with concerns to talk to us.

“All that is said will be taken seriously and treated in the strictest confidence because if we know what issues are important to you or causing you difficulties, we will do everything we can to tackle them.”

Chief Superintendent Stuart Morrison, West Area Commander for the Kestevens, West Lindsey and Lincoln, added: “By its very name, Operation NOVA is saying NO to violence and abuse.

“Any type of violent or abusive behaviour will not be tolerated and will be dealt with robustly by the police.

“One of the keys to that happening is that incidents are reported to us as we rely greatly on intelligence and information from the public to help us investigate offences.

“Only if incidents are reported to us, can we deal with them and so we are working closely with partner agencies to ensure that Lincolnshire remains a safe and enjoyable place to live.”

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