Big thank you from

Chief Constable praises officers on visit to city

Chief Constable Matt Baggott and Chief Superintendent Henry Irvine

Chief Constable Matt Baggott and Chief Superintendent Henry Irvine

CHIEF Constable Matt Baggott has visited Lisburn Police Station this week to meet officers and thank and encourage them for their work in their fight against crime.

Chief Constable Matt Baggott

Chief Constable Matt Baggott

Overall crime in Lisburn is down by 13 per cent in Lisburn this year, which Mr Baggott believes is largely due to the many initiatives of the officers and good quality policing.

"I have been here in Lisburn for a good three hours and I have been really very impressed with the many local initiatives there are, helping improve the lives of people in the community," he said.

"I have been very impressed with the work which is making a real impact in the fight against crime. I came here as a chance to thank and encourage the teams who are making big differences.

"I am delighted that overall crime has been reduced. Burglaries are down and that is making people safer. Northern Ireland is becoming a safer place to live as a whole.

"The work that (Chief Superintendent) Henry (Irvine) and his team are doing in targeting criminals and bringing them to the courts is very impressive."

Mr Baggott said he was also impressed with the recent drugs seizures which had taken place in Lisburn.

Chief Superintendent Irvine, the commander in charge of Antrim, Carrickfergus, Lisburn and Newtownabbey said: "We have had one recent drugs find at Antrim Road which has had a positive impact to the lives of the community. The £150,000 drugs seizure was found and that was thanks to the good work of a member of the public who used initiative, went to the police about suspicions and as a result officers discovered a huge cannabis factory operating in the area.

"The more we can encourage people to come forward and report crime like that the better." Mr Baggott also believed that it was important for people when they contact the emergency number they got a good response.

"We realise that there is a lot more work to do and we appreciate that," he said.

Mr Irvine said that Dunmurry was a perfect example of where 'personal policing' has come into the heart of areas where people have had doubts in the past about policing.

"There is no greater example of personal policing than in Dunmurry," he said. "The neighbourhood policing team there has made great headway in addressing issues such as anti social behaviour. A few years we could not have gone into those areas without back up but we are foot patrolling now.

"The team work closely in helping people living in those areas."

Mr Baggott continued: "There have been a number of areas where for generations policing has been seen as a risk rather than a right. We have worked hard to change that."

Ulster Star