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Police Newsletter Beat SM46 Marchmont

A Division

Community and Neighbourhood Watch News

ISSUE 51 November 2008

'Work With Us'

City Wide

Divisional Commanders Message

October marked the first ever Leith ‘week of action’, a joint partnership initiative which proved incredibly successful. Lothian and Borders Police linked in with the City Council, the Fire and Rescue Service, Neighbourhood Watch groups and local residents. As well as tackling crime at a local level head-on, our officers were able to build links with the local community and develop an ongoing mutually beneficial relationship. The scheme has the potential to be rolled out in other areas as time goes on.

The darker nights have brought their own challenges over the past month. In the run-up to Halloween and Fireworks night, A Division officers worked extremely hard to ensure residents enjoyed these events safely. We focused on targeting seasonal anti social behaviour and imparting vital safety advice.

Lothian and Borders Police have also been supporting a group of local nightclubs with their ‘Unight’ scheme, which aims to combat crime and anti social behaviour. New statistics released show crime has dropped by a fifth in the year since it was launched. These are encouraging figures and great news for anyone who wants to enjoy Edinburgh’s vibrant nightlife.

Chief Superintendent Colin Campbell, Divisional Commander.

Hot Topics

Door Step Crime

At any time of year they could arrive on your doorstep, cold callers or bogus callers, call them what you may.

They take on many faces pretending to be from a utility company, charity collector, the ‘plumber’ working next door, selling over priced goods, using hard selling techniques or overcharging for work, they all want one thing; your money, and will try many ways to get it.

It is important to take some simple precautions so that such people do not take advantage of yourself or others.
  • What do these people look like? They are plausible people, dressing and talking in such a way to inspire confidence in you to ‘trust’ them. Do not get taken in.
  • Who is at risk and when? Many bogus callers will call during the day – times that you would expect trades people and service providers to call. Charity collectors will call at various times.
  • Bogus Callers are always inventing new ways of getting into people's homes to steal valuables or money. If you do not know or expect a caller, do not let them into your home.
  • What can you do? Always check who is at your door before you open it. If you have a door chain use it.
  • An expected a caller. Check they are genuine, they will show you ID and you can contact the company; using the phone book to get the company telephone number to confirm the callers identity.
  • Doorstep workman. Don't let any casual caller do work on your property, for example roofing, driveway or gardening work.
  • Be aware. Be careful yourself and lookout for neighbours, if suspicious people are in the area, contact the police.

Local News

Beat SM46

This is the November edition of your monthly newsletter, reviewing the results of crime trends during October in respect of your ward.

In October 54 crimes were reported in your ward, which is below the monthly average, and represents a significant decrease from the previous month when 86 were reported!

During October 6 premises were broken into in our area, a rate which is consistent with the previous month. The break-ins occurred at the following locations:
  • Glengyle Terrace
  • Marchmont Road (business premises)
  • Roseneath Street (business premises)
  • Spottiswoode Street
  • Valleyfield Street
  • Warrender Park Terrace
Two of these have been solved, and in one case the two male suspects were caught by Police on the premises after a vigilant member of the public contacted Police!

Three vehicles were stolen from the area during different dates in October, similar to the previous month. They were stolen from the following locations:
  • Bruntsfield Crescent
  • Strathearn Road
  • Warrender Park Road
Two of the thefts were of motorcycles, and we have already found the youths responsible for this. In one case the stolen bike was seen being ridden afterwards and was found dumped in the Niddrie area shortly after.

We do find that youths from other parts of Edinburgh visit the Southside at night, trawling residential streets for vehicles to steal. They particularly favour scooters and we often find these vehicles abandoned elsewhere in the city afterwards.

The message, as always, is be vigilant to anyone acting suspiciously around parked vehicles during the night!

Two cars were broken into on Roseneath Terrace and Roseneath Place. These incidents both occurred on the evening of the 17th of October and are no doubt linked. In one case, no items were stolen from the vehicle, although a CD player was stolen from the other vehicle. Our local enquiries have so far drawn a blank as to who could be responsible for this.

There were relatively few vehicle vandalisms in the area in October, with only 2 cases being reported to Police (compared to 5 reported during each of the previous two months). These occurred on Glengyle Terrace and Lauriston Park. Both of the vandalisms involved damage to wing mirrors, on different dates and they remain unsolved at present. This crime type is often motiveless and can be quite difficult to solve unless we have a witness. Please do call us immediately if you see anybody engaged in such vandalism.

In October, as in September, we received 8 reports of stolen pedal cycles in the area from the following locations:
  • Arden Street
  • Argyle Park Terrace
  • Marchmont Road
  • Spottiswoode Road
  • Spottiswoode Street
  • Warrender Park Crescent
  • Warrender Park Road (2)
As I write, this month we are undertaking a special initiative to address pedal cycle theft, called ‘Operation Adapt’. This will involve the use of plainclothes officers out scouting for potential bike thieves in the area. This Police task force will be comprised of pairs of officers from the Neighbourhood Action Unit as well as Community Beat Officers. We will be challenging anybody we find in circumstances that suggest they may have stolen a bicycle, or anybody who is found acting suspiciously around any bikes.

One pattern coming to light is that newly stolen bikes, or bike parts or wheels removed from bikes, are sometimes stolen then left temporarily at another nearby location for the thief or his associates to return later on and pick them up. We have recently found such stolen bikes and bike parts dumped in the common stairs or grounds of nearby tenements.

Please be alert to this ifyou can, and if you have any suspicions about anybody tampering with bikes in such a way, please call the main Police switchboard to report this.

Police received reports of 9 assaults from the public in October in the area. I am pleased to say that we have managed to solve 5 of these already, 3 of which related to incidents of domestic abuse, with the rest being of a minor nature.

Note that we will be increasing our patrols in the area around the Meadows on the run-up to Christmas, specifically to target the problem of disorder, violence and under-age drinking in the area.

An incident occurred in Meadow Place about 9pm on the 22nd of October, in which some houses in the lane had their exterior telephone cables cut. The reason for this is unclear, but the cutting of the cables activated a burglar alarm in one case, which was how attention became drawn to this.

At present, it looks unlikely that we will find the person(s) responsible, however we will update you if we have similar information on this happening elsewhere.

This is my final newsletter – as stated last month PC 4601 Yocksan Bell will be replacing me and I shall be taking up frontline response duties within the Force. You will hopefully see me out and about on patrol with my other colleagues in the area soon! I would like to wish PC Bell all the best in his new role and I know he will do his best to ensure that the area continues to receive both responsive and pro-active community policing of a high standard.

PC 5801 Lindsey Thomson

Useful Numbers

  And Finally...

Community Beat Officer for Marchmont

Until 30th November 2008
PC 5801A Lindsey Thomson

From 1st December 2008
PC 4601A Yocksan Bell

Inspector Richard Horan

Force Communications Centre
(For non-emergency crimes or other disorder)
Tel: 0131 311 3131

St Leonards Police Station
Tel: 0131 662 5000

Community Safety Department
Tel: 0131 221 2050 / 2100

  I’m delighted to report that both Halloween and Bonfire Night passed quietly from a policing perspective. The procedures we put in place this year with the Council, Retailers and Fire Service certainly seem to have reduced occurrences of egg throwing, anti-social behaviour and problems relating to bonfires and fireworks.

One issue we still need to get on top off is wheelie bins being set on fire, but otherwise I think we’re heading in the right direction.

With December fast approaching a lot of people are doing their Christmas shopping. Be careful with your wallet or handbag, pick pockets are rare in Edinburgh but it does happen. Likewise make sure your house insurance covers the potential extra value of any presents.

Also, whether you celebrate Christmas or not, please don’t leave valuables, shopping, presents or other goods in your vehicle –it’s an easy, tempting target for the opportunist.

Inspector Richard Horan