Lights and ac­tion but no camera

South Waikato News - - Front Page - LUKE KIRKEBY

De­lays to pro­posed se­cu­rity cam­eras in Toko­roa’s CBD are ham­per­ing po­lice ef­forts to catch van­dals.

Toko­roa Po­lice senior sergeant Jason Hen­der­son said 11 win­dows in the cen­tral busi­ness dis­trict (CBD) have been smashed this week and will likely cost more than $2000 per win­dow to re­place.

The van­dal­ism fol­lows a spate of win­dow smash­ing in Toko­roa in late Septem­ber 2016 where a group of four teenagers smashed 52 win­dows at three schools and busi­nesses over two nights.

In early Oc­to­ber 2016 a sep­a­rate group of teenagers were also be­lieved to have been re­spon­si­ble for fur­ther bro­ken win­dows at lo­cal schools.

Hen­der­son said it was frus­trat­ing for busi­ness own­ers and po­lice were de­ter­mined to catch those re­spon­si­ble.

‘‘We have ap­pre­hended a cou­ple of young males al­ready but they have been walk­ing around in large groups smash­ing win­dows so we are ask­ing peo­ple who may be out late at night in town, who may see groups of young peo­ple walk­ing around, to please call us if they see any sus­pi­cious ac­tiv­ity so we can hunt them out as this is to­tally un­nec­es­sary,’’ he said.

‘‘It is go­ing to be over to them or their fam­i­lies to pay and they may have to work to pay them off but they will be held to ac­count for what they have done.’’

He said de­lays to the South Waikato Dis­trict Coun­cil’s plan to in­stall a $60,000 CBD Closed Cir­cuit Tele­vi­sion (CCTV) Network was also frus­trat­ing.

‘‘If they can get the CCTV footage in that will help and po­lice will also be in­creas­ing pa­trols in and around the area so we can ap­pre­hend th­ese peo­ple,’’ he said.

‘‘Th­ese peo­ple can’t hide from ev­ery­one all the time, they do walk around and they will be seen, it just comes back to the com­mu­nity step­ping up to sup­port busi­ness own­ers and do­ing some­thing about it.’’

South Waikato Dis­trict Coun­cil com­mu­ni­ca­tions of­fi­cer Sina Tolo­vae said the coun­cil was de­ter­mined to get the CCTV network in­stalled as soon as pos­si­ble.

‘‘The first CCTV camera was in­stalled in De­cem­ber of last year how­ever we were un­able to pro­cure ad­di­tional cam­eras un­til re­cently due to de­ple­tion in stock,’’ she said.

Tolo­vae said the cam­eras to be in­stalled in Bridge St will be go­ing up in Fe­bru­ary and the re­main­ing cam­eras on pri­vate build­ings shortly after.

LUKE KIRKEBY/ FAIR­FAX NZ

Toko­roa Com­mu­nity Gar­dens sec­re­tary Robyn Wolfe and or­gan­iser Lynn Wil­son.

Shop win­dows have been smashed.

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