Drug operations hit crime figures

PUBLISHED: 11:00 28 April 2008 | UPDATED: 10:36 17 June 2010

SUCCESSFUL drug seizures at Beautiful Days led to an increase in crime figures for Ottery in the past year.

SUCCESSFUL drug seizures at Beautiful Days led to an increase in crime figures for Ottery in the past year.Neighbourhood beat manager PC Phil Thomas reported the number of crimes recorded over the past year to Ottery Town Council's annual parish meeting on Tuesday evening. In 2006/07 264 crimes were committed in the town and this figure has grown to 281.PC Thomas said: "Crime figures have shown a downward trend in recent years, but have risen slightly this year. "This is in large part due to the Beautiful Days festival held at Escot during August 2007, when police conducted an operation leading to 50 drug seizures."Assaults in the town fell from 30 to 16. Burglaries to dwellings decreased from 13 to 10, while burglaries to non-dwellings rose from 10 to 30 with most of the incidents involving insecure sheds and garages.Vehicle crime dropped from 88 to 64 this year, but general damage to property rose around 20 per cent from 30 to 36. Thefts in the town fell from 53 to 45.Miscellaneous offences such as disqualified driving, drink driving and drugs offences rose from 40 to 77, mostly due to the 50 successful drugs seizures at Beautiful Days. PC Thomas told the meeting that most of the major events Ottery Police deal with, including Pixie Day and Tar Barrels, passed without problem.PC Thomas laid out the main priorities he and PCSO Maria Clapp will be concentrating on, which include anti-social behaviour on the Land of Canaan and traffic flow problems through Yonder Street and Jesu Street. He said responsibility for traffic duties will soon be transferred to East Devon District Council traffic enforcement officers, who will be able to provide more continuity.PC Thomas said: "I personally believe this to be a good way forward as it is often difficult for police to provide continuity at the location in addition to other police commitments."The police are currently trying to organise a community day of action involving the King's School and the older members of the town for May 13.

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