Tory Councillor would have faced gross misconduct charge, if he had not retired from the police! #SpyCops

A Conservative City Councillor in Peterborough has made the national news, after a Scotland Yard investigation ruled in favour of a woman after she made a complaint alleging that Cllr Andy Coles had deceived her into a sexual relationship.

Recent media reports

Add YOUR support to the petition calling for Cllr Andy Coles to RESIGN!

Who is Andy Coles?

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Conservative Councillor Andy Coles, represents Fletton and Woodston, was first elected in 2015. He has so far received £48,874 as a councillor and is set to receive even more.

From July 2015 to May 2016 he was also the council cabinet member with responsibility for Children Services, but has since stepped down from this role.

3 years ago, Coles also resigned as the Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner for Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, claiming media coverage had “significantly impacted his ability” to conduct his duties.

Add YOUR support to the petition calling for Cllr Andy Coles to RESIGN!

So what’s the crux?

As reported in the media, the inquiry said Coles would have faced a disciplinary hearing on a charge of gross misconduct if he had not already retired from the Metropolitan police in 2013.

An officer found guilty of gross misconduct is likely to be sacked.

The woman, known only as Jessica, is also taking legal action against the Met, alleging that Coles “groomed and manipulated” her. She said she was “naive, idealistic, unsophisticated and a very young 19” when she started a sexual relationship with him.

Add YOUR support to the petition calling for Cllr Andy Coles to RESIGN!

What about locally?

Protesting against Cllr Andy Coles

Over the last couple of years, local residents have protested outside and inside the Town Hall in Peterborough, which even led to the Public Gallery being closed by the then Mayor, Cllr John Fox (an ex-Police Officer), for around a year.

Add YOUR support to the petition calling for Cllr Andy Coles to RESIGN!

Worth noting …

Mr Coles has previous blasted the claims as ‘lurid’ and denied he was intimate with the woman …..

Additional Reading:

 

 

 

When did you last spot a police officer?

Police in Peterborough

The Conservative police and crime commissioner for Cambridgeshire, recently announced that he intended to increase the Council Tax bills for people in this area.

He also claimed that the increase would see an additional 62 officers being recruited by March 2021 for the county.

But, so far has not detailed how many Peterborough will get, and more specifically how many for the north area of Peterborough?

Worth Noting

Under the Tories and Lib Dems, we have seen a decade of cuts to police and vital public services that have shown you simply can’t keep people safe on the cheap.

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What people told me:

From doing my on-line resident survey last year, I discovered that 60% of respondents could not remember the last time they saw a police officer, 19% had seen an officer in the last few months, 12% in the last 7 days and 9% in the last couple of years.

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What does Darren think?

Every time I read about recorded crime in Peterborough declining, the same thought pops into my head: Is the real story that less people are bothering to report crime?

In Peterborough we need to rebuild the police workforce, we need to recruit more police officers, police community support officers and police staff.

I also believe we need to re-establish neighbourhood policing and recruit more front-line officers than have been planned for by the Conservatives.

Effective police work requires the police to serve their communities and work collaboratively with youth workers, mental health services, schools, drug rehabilitation programmes and other public agencies.

We also need to eliminate institutional biases against BAME communities.

We also need to make use of social media and make it easier for residents to report crime and share useful information.

Please Note:

  • The 2019 survey was completed by over 230 local residents.
  • Any submissions from people outside of the unitary authority were removed.
  • To view the FINAL stats please VISIT HERE!

 

Knife Crime in Peterborough is not a problem, right?

Knife Crime in Cambridgeshire

Last year it was reported, 150 first-time knife crime offenders were convicted or cautioned in Peterborough and Cambridgeshire in 2018.

At the time, Conservative Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Police and Crime Commissioner Jason Ablewhite said:

“….we are not seeing the levels of knife crime which are happening elsewhere. I have spoken about the need to educate young people as to the dangers of carrying knives. It may feel like some sort of badge of honour but the consequences, as we have seen, can be devastating both for potential victims and perpetrators.”

Sadly, since then, Mr Ablewhite has stood down from his post as Police and Crime Commissioner and as a Tory councillor.

Violent crimes like knife crime, which has risen to record high levels, up 80% in the last five years.

In Peterborough …..

According to the website police.uk, in August 2019, there were 17 incidents of crime involving “possession of weapons” in the Peterborough area; in September 2019, it was 34, in October 2019 it was 29 and in November 2019 it was 27.

That’s an average of 26 a month, nearly one a day.

So what does Darren think?

I think that youth services transform the lives of young people by providing a safe place where they can go to develop friendships and engage in meaningful activities.

Sadly, such vital services, have been slashed by the Tories, nationally and locally. This has created the conditions in which crime can thrive, leaving young people more vulnerable to violence.

We need a government that will introduce legislation to guarantee quality youth services for all of our young people and give our councils the funding they need to invest in our public services.

Did YOU know?

It is illegal to:

  • sell a knife of any kind to anyone under 18 years old.
  • carry a knife in public without good reason – unless it’s a knife with a folding blade 3 inches long (7.62 cm) or less, e.g. a Swiss Army knife
  • carry, buy or sell any type of banned knife
  • use any knife in a threatening way (even a legal knife, such as a Swiss Army knife).

The maximum penalty for an adult carrying a knife is four years in prison and a fine of £5,000.

When can we expect to see more bobbies in Gunthorpe?

Police at Brookside methodist church
Police at Brookside methodist church, in Gunthorpe

You may remember last year, that one of the promises made by the Tories during the General Election, was to introduce 20,000 extra police officers across the country – now whilst we know that they had previously cut the force by 20,000 – I for one would still like to know when we can expect to see them in Gunthorpe and parts of Werrington?

Only last month, the Harrier on Gunthorpe Road, was burgled in the early hours of a Sunday morning.

While, according to the website police.uk reports of burglary in this area, averaged around 4 a month between August 2019 and November 2019.

But as I always remind people, reported crime does not always represent the true level of crime? For example, when it comes to burglary, I’ve heard stories about some residents not even realising they’ve been burgled and thus, do not report it.

So where are the Cops?

Police at Cissbury Ring
Police at Cissbury Ring, in Werrington

That is the question I’d like an answer to. Therefore, I have now formally contacted the Police Crime Commissioner for Peterborough and asked him to furnish me with the information.

I’ve also asked for details as to how much coverage we get and when the last roaming police surgery was, if they are still going at all?

As always, if you have thoughts or opinions on policing in this area, please let me know below.

Spike in vehicle crime in this area and a sophisticated electronic kit …

Nissan Juke
Not the ACTUAL Nissan Juke stolen!

I was pleased to read the other week about the crook who stole eight cars from driveways using sophisticated electronic kit and that he has now been jailed.

One of the vehicles taken was a Nissan Juke, from Sunnymead in Werrington. The car was never found.

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I was reminded ….

That we had seen a spike in vehicle crime in this area, in November last year.

For example, the number of recorded vehicle crime for July 2019 was 5, in August 2019 it was 2, in September 2019 it was 2, in October it was 7, but in November it was 12 …..!

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One other thing …

If you have any concerns or information that you think Cambs Police might be interested in, then please contact them!

Uldale Way “firearm” resident in Court

Uldale Way

You may have read recently in the PT, about Calvin Jackson of Uldale Way (Gunthorpe) who was charged with:

  • possession of a firearm,
  • possession of prohibited ammunition,
  • possession of an offensive weapon in a public place,
  • two counts of possession of a firearm during a five-year period following a suspended sentence
  • and producing a Class B drug.

Well he’s due in court this month, so hopefully we will find out more and if found guilty, he’ll be dealt with appropriately!

If you have any information that you think the police might be interested in knowing, to call 101, alternatively you can have a look at the September crime figures for the Gunthorpe ward, by visiting here!

Crime remains a concern for many local residents, especially as on Theresa May’s watch, police numbers have been cut by 20,000 and most experts know that cuts to the police force endanger communities and endanger police officers too.

Therefore, it’s my opinion that we need to face facts and look for a government that will provide officers, police community support officers and civilian staff with the equipment and people they need to provide effective policing services!

FYI – I have now requested an update from the Police Crime Commissioner on what action plans he has in place to address concerns of drugs and firearms locally, once he has responded I will of course share.

As always, please feel free to let me know your thoughts below!

 

Less Trading Standards = More RISK to older people!

Trading Standards in Peterborough

According Age UK, trading standards budgets have been cut by some 50% over the last 7 years.

The result? Millions of older people are at a greater risk of becoming victims of fraud.

Did YOU see?

In April 2018, local media reported that Directors of a Peterborough firm which pressure sold beds and chairs to elderly and vulnerable residents were jailed.

Judge Cooper said of Geoffrey and Jaqueline Turner, of Hall Lane (Werrington), “You chose to impoverish customers mentally, intellectually, emotionally and financially.”

What else…?

Age UK also said it believed 2/5’s of older people (nearly 5 million over 65’s), believe they’ve been targeted by scammers.

What do I think?

I think the Tory government must ensure trading standards services are properly resourced, and that they stop giving them additional duties on top of their core role of protecting residents and stopping rogue traders.

What have I done?

I have now requested an update on the present state of play, from Directors at Peterborough City Council, in respect of staff numbers and budget levels, and whether these have changed over the last few years.

Once I have details on this I will of course share it with you.

For more information relating to Peterborough City Council’s Trading Services, please VISIT HERE!

Could you spot slavery in Peterborough?

Modern day slavery

“Modern day slavery is a rising threat to our communities, and because of its hidden nature, is a major concern.”

In my opinion, there is no doubt that more people locally, need to be more aware of modern slavery to help tackle criminal gangs exploiting vulnerable workers living in squalor and on scandalous wages.

Read more

Could you spot slavery in Peterborough?

Modern day slavery

“Modern day slavery is a rising threat to our communities, and because of its hidden nature, is a major concern.”

In my opinion, there is no doubt that more people locally, need to be more aware of modern slavery to help tackle criminal gangs exploiting vulnerable workers living in squalor and on scandalous wages.

Read more

Are YOU happy for Council staff to have Body Worn Cameras? #Consultation

Body Camera

Peterborough City Council are presently consulting on whether or not to use body worn cameras for their officers working in the Prevention and Enforcement Service.

  • Only takes a second or two to have your say! Simply VISIT HERE!

According to the City Council, the scheme would enable officers, “..if they observe an offence occurring, to activate their camera during this offence and their interaction with the offender.”

Read more