THE Manning/Great Lakes Local Area Command recently received a petition signed by 593 residents of the Wingham community "asking for the rights of the Wingham community to have the 'rights to justice, protection and safety' reinstated by, returning police to a full time presence in Wingham".
The crime figures of the Wingham sector for the past five years have been reviewed.
This review indicated that some property related offences such as breaking into buildings, stealing from house and yards, and from retail shops had shown some increase. Malicious damage incidents had remained static, whilst drug possession and supply related offences had increased.
The review also showed that the crime categories for assault (including alcohol, and/or domestic violence related) had decreased. Usually the increase in drug related offences is an indication of increased police investigation in the area.
The Manning/Great Lakes Local Area Command does not have any plan to remove the staff from Wingham on a permanent basis, and that the current redirection of staff stationed at Wingham was a short term reallocation, to try ensure a more efficient use of the available human resources.
The police command has developed and implemented the concept of an 'area' car, which is targeting crime, by specific tasks across a number of areas, which includes Wingham, Old Bar, Coopernook and Taree.
When the staffing levels of operational police permit, the rostering of police specifically in the Wingham area will be a high priority to be reassessed for the Manning/Great Lakes Local Area Command.