Police back on beat
Officers keen to talk the walk
Although bobbies on the beat may be nothing new, seeing a couple of coppers on Napier streets is a welcome sight for many.
Sergeant Marie Marshall and Senior Constable Pat O’Leary have been spotted walking the beat and Marie says this is an opportunity to engage with the community and provide reassurance.
“Pat and I and others will make regular patrols through town depending on other jobs — I would like regular patrols,” she says.
Pat has been the community constable at the Taradale station for a few years and Marie says it makes sense for him to be closer to the CBD. Youth aid officer Senior Constable To Romans has also moved from the Taradale station to be closer to town to deal with youths around the area and build trust and confidence in the community.
“We’re making it a safer Eastern District,” Marie says.
On the beat the pair will be speaking to retailers, shoppers and any school children in town during school hours.
“Anyone that needs us, if there is shoplifting going on, etc — ensuring people aren’t hanging around and smoking synthetics.”
Marie says community policing has always been around but more emphasis is being made on being out and about and visible. Police officers can apply for positions or have rotational roles so everyone can have a go and be proactive in community projects and initiatives.
“We love community policing — we get to be out and about talking to people, meeting new people, supporting the community and
retailers and give out knowledge around safety and a preventative focus on crime.”
Marie says they hope to achieve a safer community and reassure the public that Napier is a beautiful place to live and everyone should be safe and feel safe.
“I believe the public like seeing the police out on the beat as much as we enjoy it. If they feel more assured when they are shopping by seeing us around that’s a great thing.”
The public talk to the street patrol about all sorts of things, she says, including what community events are on, they engage in conversation about how the police are doing, what may have affected them and who to go to for advice.
“We can chat about anything. We are also here to support our homeless people and get them assistance from other partner agencies — to give them some direction and support.”
Marie says the Government’s latest initiative to increase police numbers is welcomed in Napier.
“We love having new police officers — the more the merrier. We are a big close family and we welcome anyone new. I am sure the community will be happy to have more police around.
“Overall policing is a great career and if we can assist with enhancing our community that’s why we are here.”
Sergeant Marie Marshall (left) and Senior Constable Pat O’Leary walk the beat in Emerson St, Napier.