'Operation Vikings' police boost patrols in Tamworth, targeting repeat offenders and property crime

Added boost: Operation Vikings is a proactive operation with extra police on patrol on bikes, foot and in cars. Photo: Gareth Gardner
Added boost: Operation Vikings is a proactive operation with extra police on patrol on bikes, foot and in cars. Photo: Gareth Gardner

A SECRET operation which has tasked more officers on patrol in Tamworth is homing in on repeat offenders and troubled youth roaming the streets.

The Leader can reveal Operation Vikings – which sees extra police rostered in marked and unmarked cars, as well as on bikes – is conducting more stop and searches of cars and persons than ever before.  

Oxley Acting Superintendent Jeff Budd said trained officers were hitting the streets on foot, bikes and in cars, to combat a spike in crime, particularly in South Tamworth.

“Operation Vikings is a funding arrangement that gives police more ability to carry out proactive taskings and high-visibility policing, and currently that is targeting property offences and recidivist offenders,” he said.

It allows for shift extensions to get more police out on the streets, and we use that to carry out checks of those persons on bail to ensure they’re complying with those orders, as well as stop and searches of persons roaming the streets, especially late at night.

Oxley Acting Superintendent Jeff Budd

“It allows for shift extensions to get more police out on the streets, and we use that to carry out checks of those persons on bail to ensure they’re complying with those orders, as well as stop and searches of persons roaming the streets, especially late at night.

“It helps to form police intelligence and we have conducted an enormous amount of vehicle and person searches in Tamworth alone in recent weeks, and detected a significant number of offences.”

Street patrols up: Oxley Acting Superintendent Jeff Budd.

Street patrols up: Oxley Acting Superintendent Jeff Budd.

SEE ALSO:

Currently, Tamworth has close to a dozen trained operatives on the bikes, and despite the 40-degree temperatures, they’ve been clocking up the kilometres across Tamworth, both in the CBD and South and West Tamworth.

He said Operation Vikings – which tasks officers to hot spots based on crime trends – would continue.

“We have one of the best response times in the Western Region, but our proactive work is highly affected by call outs to domestic violence reports, assaults, accidents, mental health incidents and other emergencies, so we have to prioritise those jobs and respond accordingly,” he said.

Acting Superintendent Budd said January traditionally saw a spike in crime in Tamworth with extra visitors in town for festival, combined with families away on holidays for the festive season, as well as school holidays and doors and windows left open or unlocked in the hot weather.

Added boost: Operation Vikings is a proactive operation with extra police on patrol on bikes, foot and in cars. Photo: Gareth Gardner

Added boost: Operation Vikings is a proactive operation with extra police on patrol on bikes, foot and in cars. Photo: Gareth Gardner

“Close to 90 per cent of property crime is opportunistic because those opportunistic thieves get in through unlocked doors or windows to homes, or wallets and other goods left in view in cars,” he said. 

“The community has a responsibility to secure and protect their property, but they need to report suspicious activity, because if we don’t know about it, we can’t respond.”

The community has a responsibility to secure and protect their property, but they need to report suspicious activity, because if we don’t know about it, we can’t respond.

Oxley Acting Superintendent Jeff Budd

RELATED READING:

Comments

Discuss "Street patrols up as ‘Vikings’ police track crime hot spots"

Please note: All comments made or shown here are bound by the Online Discussion Terms & Conditions.