Police in Stowmarket have conducted a dedicated week of action tackling anti-social behaviour and related criminality in the town and surrounding villages in response to community concerns.
The initiative, under the Operation Drawbridge banner, was a series of pro-active days of action, co-ordinated by local officers from Stowmarket and provided a mixture of high visibility patrols in “so-called hot spot” areas, as well as some plain clothed patrols in attempts to disrupt drug dealing in the town.
Across Stowmarket, Thurston and Needham Market officers made four arrests, conducted 15 stop and search encounters, issued nine Traffic Offence Reports for incidents, and seized one vehicle.
In addition, two Misuse of Drugs warrants were carried out, seven people were reported for court summons for drug related offences, while nine incidents of drug seizures were recorded – with a total estimate of £950-worth of drugs recovered as well as £355 in cash seized.
In one incident, a 20-year-old man was stopped and searched and found to be in possession of wraps of suspected class A drugs, as well as a large bag of cannabis, a large sum of cash and two knives, one with a nine inch blade.
He was arrested on suspicion of possession of an offensive weapon and possession with intent to supply drugs.
He was taken to Bury St Edmunds Police investigation Centre where he was subsequently released under investigation, pending further enquiries
Community Engagement Officer for Stowmarket PC Stef Henriksen said: “This activity was instigated in response to community concerns in relation to criminal and ASB activity in the town in recent weeks.
“We acknowledge that ASB and other criminality can cause distress and worry for local residents and affect people’s quality of life so we hope this past week will have demonstrated how keen we are to tackle such issues.
“Apart from the above, officers also conducted over 40 hours of patrols to address ‘hot spot’ areas where anti-social behaviour was apparent, as well as addressing vehicular ASB in Thurston as well as Stowmarket.
“The week was extremely productive in providing reassurance, visibility as well as a great opportunity to gather valuable intelligence for future operational activity and potential arrests.
“It was a real collective effort with support from the Scorpion team, the Sentinel Team who both tackle drug related criminality, the Kestrel Team who have the ability to swoop into an area and support a locally based team with tackling an issue and we also had some gratefully received support from officers from the Special Constabulary.”
If you are aware of any suspicious activity taking place in your community, including drug related crime, please call 101 or 999 in an emergency.
You can also report an incident online by visiting: http://www.suffolk.police.uk/contact-us/report-something
Alternatively, contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.