Po­lice back on beat

Of­fi­cers keen to talk the walk

Napier Courier - - FRONT PAGE - BY BRENDA VOWDEN brenda.vowden@nzme.co.nz

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.

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