Community leaders in Tamworth, mayor Col Murray and MP Kevin Anderson, welcomed with plenty of relief the news yesterday that a bolstered six-man
target action police unit will take to the streets from today – intent on known criminals, offenders and troublemakers.
The Oxley command’s TAG unit has been operating on a skeleton staff for about two years, leaving plenty of holes in the police force’s blue line on crime.
The fact it has now been doubled, but with an experienced local copper at the helm who reports to the command’s crime manager directly, was good news for them, and good news for us.
Acting Oxley superintendent, Inspector Chris Taylor said the unit would target offenders on warrants, those on bail, repeat offenders and known troublemakers and would
provide a proactive policing resource.
Put simply their job is to target the people who they think pose the greatest risk of doing the wrong thing.
“The object is to get in their face ... we are saying if you are doing the wrong thing, we are going to be right in your face,” Inspector Taylor told The Leader yesterday.
He made the announcement alongside Mr Anderson and Mr Murray and the reception to the news was obvious – a palpable relief and renewed confidence in fighting the good fight.
All three admitted that they fully understand the community perceptions that crime is too prevalent, that we’re not catching the crooks, or if we are, we’re not keeping them inside or keeping them from repeating their sins.
All three professed confidence that the dedicated police target group would bring results – by putting more fear into the face of the crims and getting on their case to convince them they were being watched, and the boys in blue were waiting for them to make the wrong move.
The unit, they say, has an experienced leader who knows the crims and knows the crooks, and so therefore is one step ahead of them again.
The unit’s reformation has been a long time coming. It has a big job ahead of it, but obviously community leaders believe in its existence, and believe it can get the numbers on the board. The test will be in just how effective it can be in converting intelligence into arrests and convictions, and seeing our crime statistics show the benefit of proactive policing on the ground.