Press release

Local Impact – Lancashire

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Police Now officers tackling crime and anti-social behaviour across Lancashire

Tuesday 15 June 2021

Nearly 40,000 fewer anti-social behaviour incidents nationally in areas with Police Now officers – equivalent to 14% fall

Substantial decrease in criminal damage & arson, burglary and theft amongst other crimes

Police Now attracts and develops the most diverse group of officers in policing

Police Now officers are playing a vital role in tackling crime and anti-social behaviour in Lancashire.

Communities nationwide where Police Now officers have been posted for the last 22-months have seen 38,772 fewer incidents of anti-social behaviour compared to the same time period from October 2016 – equivalent to a 14 per cent drop.

Officers on Police Now’s National Graduate Leadership Programme have been working alongside their colleagues within their local neighbourhood teams.

As well as the drop in anti-social behaviour, communities have also seen 14,301 fewer incidents of criminal damage & arson – a fall of 13 per cent. There were 12,460 fewer incidents of burglary – a fall of 16 per cent – and 31,732 fewer incidents of theft, equivalent to a 14 per cent fall.

PC Lewis Cosh of Lancashire Constabulary responded to a report that a man had knocked an older woman unconscious on a busy high street in Blackpool. There were numerous other reports made about the man including violent assaults, public order offences and thousands of pounds of damage to businesses in Blackpool Town Centre. PC Cosh arrested the man and secured strong evidence for a conviction against him, successfully obtaining a Criminal Behaviour Order. As a result, there have been no further reports of the man committing crimes in the town centre.

PC Cosh said “[one of the things that makes me proud] is seeing the change in the area you have been policing. Whether that is the reduction in police reports, seeing the area become safer, or hearing positive things from members of the community that have been impacted. It makes you feel that the work you and the others you work with do is worthwhile.”

PC Charles McCarthy of Lancashire Constabulary also obtained Criminal Behaviour Orders against two individuals in his policing area, Skelmersdale. He helped dramatically reduce the number of hoax 999 and 101 calls being carried out by the two repeat offenders, who were ringing in false reports that a crime had been committed or claiming there was concern for someone’s safety. In those instances, ambulances usually had to attend, placing a huge strain on emergency services. PC McCarthy worked with colleagues to gather enough evidence for the court to issue Criminal Behaviour Orders (CBOs) against the pair. The number of hoax 999 calls – and subsequent deployment from Police, Fire and Ambulance, has now greatly reduced.

Police Now’s mission is to transform communities by recruiting, developing and inspiring diverse leaders in policing.

Officers on Police Now’s programmes develop skills in leadership and problem-solving. They share a commitment to public service, fighting crime and inspiring social change alongside their colleagues.

Police Now has recruited a total of 1,830 officers across 33 forces in the UK, including Lancashire Constabulary. Chief Constable Chris Rowley has invested in his communities by partnering with Police Now for the past five years, with 53 police constables joining the force via this route.

Police Now consistently recruits more officers who are women or from black, Asian and minority ethnic backgrounds compared to any other entry route into policing. Police Now recruitment data shows that of those starting the National Graduate Leadership Programme in Lancashire in 2020, 17% identified as coming from a black, Asian and minority Ethnic background and exactly half identified as women.

“We’re incredibly proud of the positive impact our participants continue to have within their local communities, and their commitment to driving positive change with their colleagues so that everyone in our society, including the most vulnerable, have a chance to thrive”.

David Spencer

Co-founder of Police Now and former Detective Chief Inspector

Neighbourhood police officer | Lewis Cosh

Q&A with Police Constable Lewis Cosh

Neighbourhood Police Officer

National Graduate Leadership Programme Participant

Lancashire Constabulary

Police Now is trying to increase diversity in the force. Do you think having a force that better reflects the community it serves helps to bring down crimes like anti-social behaviour and why?

A Police Service that better reflects the community helps build the community’s trust in the police. A better reflection of society in the police helps officers to engage with those in their community. This helps us build trust, enables us to gather information from the community, find out what the real problems are and what the solutions could be! It helps safeguard the most vulnerable.

A more representative work force also helps educate those around them. This brings more cultural understanding from officers and helps us to engage with our community in a way that is more productive so that we can find ways of speaking to people who cause anti-social behaviour on a better level. This is also relevant for the victims of ASB and allows us to help reduce this in communities.

When you can talk to someone and help them see you as a person not as a just a uniform then you can have a more productive conversation and come up with effective solutions to community issues.

What was the most important lesson you took from your training with Police Now that has enabled you to deal with crime / support your community?

The benefit of other agencies in helping to solve problems in my areas. There are other agencies that know the area better than I do. They can highlight the key people in my area to help resolve problems. Also, they can sometimes build better relationships with individuals in the community than the police sometimes can. Having a good relationship with these agencies allows for better sharing of information and quicker resolution of problems in the community.

Have you implemented any new initiatives to reduce ASB or burglary crimes, or build confidence in policing in your community?

Numerous reports of a man known for violent assaults, public order offences and thousands of pounds of damage to businesses in Blackpool Town Centre. I responded to a report where this man had knocked an older woman unconscious in a busy high street.

I attended, arrested the man and secured strong evidence for conviction against him. Due to the persistent and numerous offences he had caused I applied for a Criminal Behaviour Order against him. On conviction this was successfully granted where the male was banned from entering Blackpool Town Centre. As a result, there have been no further reports of the male causing these crimes in town centre. This has safeguarded people who come to work in the town, vulnerable people who he preys on and helped make the town centre a safer place.

Also, a report of a residence on the outskirts of Blackpool Town Centre that had numerous reports of drug dealing, drug use, fly tipping and buying stolen goods. The area outside the address was frequently littered with used needles as well as human waste. The address had been subject to two drugs warrants and the activity had not stopped. Therefore, our team in conjunction with Blackpool Council worked for a Closure Order on the property. On the application of the closure order the occupants chose to relinquish their tenancy and moved out of the area. This resulted in a complete drop in complaints in the area. There have been no police reports about the premises or the surrounding area since.

What has been the moment that you have been most proud of professionally in the last 22 months?

Seeing the change in the area you have been policing. Whether that is the reduction in police reports, seeing the area become safer, or hearing positive things from members of the community that have been impacted. It makes you feel that the work you, and the others you work with do, is worthwhile.

Data references

Using data taken from Police Recorded Crime Statistics, the independently peer-reviewed figures compare the 22-month period from October 2016 to July 2018 before any Police Now officers had joined their local communities to the period when they joined from October 2018 to July 2020.

The data presented here is subject to limitations with Police Recorded Crime Statistics and methodology. More details on this are available at the bottom of the following Police Now webpage.

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Police Now | Devon & Cornwall Constabulary
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Chief Constable

National Graduate Leadership Programme

Cohorts: 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020
No. of police officers enrolled: 8

National Detective Programme

Cohorts: —— —— —— —— 2019 2020
No. of police officers enrolled:

Case studies: