City se­ri­ous on se­cu­rity: Mayor

PETTITT DE­FENDS SAFETY RECORD AF­TER SE­RI­OUS CRIMES

Fremantle Gazette - - NEWS - Belinda Cipri­ano

DE­SPITE two se­ri­ous crime in­ci­dents within a month in the port city, Mayor Brad Pettitt is as­sur­ing vis­i­tors it is a safe place.

Last month, a man was stabbed with a screw­driver in front of Fre­man­tle court­house in the pres­ence of his four-year-old daugh­ter.

While last week 54-year-old Michael John War­rilow, also known as Michael John Young, was found dead on Lloyd Street in South Fre­man­tle.

Dr Pettitt said de­spite the two in­ci­dents, the coun­cil and po­lice were do­ing what they could to keep the streets safe.

“Peo­ple are more likely to share neg­a­tive sto­ries or feed­back on so­cial me­dia,” he said.

“The City is not the po­lice, and crime can only be dealt with by po­lice; we can’t even give a moveon no­tice.

“It’s im­por­tant to un­der­stand there is a sep­a­ra­tion of power and all lo­cal govern­ments – not just Fre­man­tle – are re­stricted by that.

“Al­though we have dif­fer­ent pow­ers, we are not do­ing noth­ing; we have part­nered to work with the po­lice to ex­pand CCTV but we are cre­at­ing a strong col­lab­o­ra­tion.

“We are try­ing to make Fre­man­tle safer by ac­ti­vat­ing the streets and get­ting more peo­ple to live and work in Fre­man­tle.

“Hav­ing our bike pa­trol has been re­ally ef­fec­tive at pro­vid­ing vis­i­bil­ity and has been a re­ally good ini­tia­tive.”

An­other ini­tia­tive in­cluded ex­tend­ing the Com­mu­nity Safety Team’s pa­trol hours un­til 2am from Wed­nes­days to Satur­days.

Benny’s Bar and Cafe owner Ivan Dzeba told the Fre­man­tle Gazette he had seen huge im­prove­ment, with ho­tel se­cu­rity, street chap­lains, City se­cu­rity and po­lice work­ing to­gether.

“These guys (po­lice) do an amaz­ing job out here,” he said.

“I think Fre­man­tle has re­ally turned a cor­ner and it’s a great place to come and spend a night out.”

Last Satur­day (Fe­bru­ary 3), the Fre­man­tle Gazette spent a night with Fre­man­tle Lo­cal Polic­ing Team 1 (LPT) and Cock­burn’s South Metro North­ern Re­sponse of­fi­cers where they is­sued a move-on no­tice to a man car­ry­ing three knives on his body.

Fre­man­tle of­fi­cer-in-charge Brad War­bur­ton said crime sta­tis­tics showed there had been a sig­nif­i­cant re­duc­tion in of­fences against a per­son from the 2014-15 pe­riod but there had been a slight in­crease from 2015-16.

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