City of Melville Acting Mayor Nicole Robins said local police were a key stakeholder in achieving a safe and secure community and the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) meant important information such as crime statistics, crime hotspots and community issues could be shared in a mutually beneficial manner.
“The City’s Community Safety Service (CSS) officers meet with police on a weekly basis and share information on any issues identified from community calls. Likewise our local police also share information, which assists the CSS with planning and setting priorities, identifying hot spots and responding to relevant crime and safety issues across the community,” said Mrs. Robins.
In 2017 a CSS review was conducted by an independent party in an effort to identify areas of improvement as part of the City’s implementation of an International Safe Communities Framework. A key recommendation from the review was to exchange information on a daily basis with local police stations instead of weekly.
In October 2017, this recommendation was implemented and local police now send daily crime statistics to the CSS team, who use this information to create hot spot patrols which are an important part of intelligence based patrolling. Since the daily information sharing was put in place the CSS has conducted over 26,000 hot spot patrols.
When conducting a hot spot patrol, CSS officers spend a predetermined amount of time in a particular area, dropping off home safety checklists for homes where security can be improved, conducting Designing Out Crime audits and where suspicious activity is observed, reporting it to the local police. CSS Officers also drop off calling cards with crime prevention tips where needed, for example if someone has left their garage door open.
“The City is often contacted by the community asking what the CSS does and whether it is having an impact on crime. Daily information sharing is just one example of the work being done behind the scenes by local police and the CSS to target their efforts where it is most needed, and we are seeing positive outcomes as a result,” said Mrs Robins.
There have been a number of success stories which can be linked to the MOU arrangement, the recent improvements made to the CSS as a result of the independent review and the good working relationship that the City has with WA Police.
1) In January 2018 a CSS officer was conducting a hotspot patrol to an area identified by local police. Whilst on site the CSS officer observed an incident involving a group of people on the street. The CSS officer called for police attendance and took down details of all parties involved. The officer also ensured the vehicle was parked in a position where the dashcam could record the incident. Details of the incident and footage were provided to police who used this information to charge the individuals involved with disorderly conduct.
2) In December 2017 a CSS officer was conducting a hotspot patrol in an area identified by local police. Whilst on site the CSS officer observed a vehicle pull out and then quickly back into an alley way of an industrial area. The CSS officer drove past the vehicle which had its lights dipped and then drove at speed through a set of red lights. CSS called for police attendance and took down details of the vehicle. The CSS officer entered the parking area where the vehicle was first sighted and noticed a glass door had been smashed. The owners of the premises contacted CSS the next day thanking them for disturbing the offenders who were attempting to break in.
For more information on the City’s partnership with WA Police and other Safer Melville initiatives visit www.melvillecity.com.au/safermelville or call 1300 635 845 | 9364 0666.