Com­mu­nity police team face con­stant fight to keep streets safe

Kentish Gazette Canterbury & District - - Police Chief -

On the front­line of the war against drugs and knives in the dis­trict is Can­ter­bury’s Com­mu­nity Polic­ing Team (CPT).

It is a ded­i­cated band of ex­pe­ri­enced officers who work night and day, car­ry­ing out stop and searches on sus­pected crim­i­nals and ex­e­cut­ing war­rants.

They also fo­cus on anti-so­cial be­hav­iour and unin­sured and dis­qual­i­fied driv­ers who are of­ten in­volved in other crim­i­nal­ity.

The tac­ti­cal team is led by Sgt Gra­ham Todd, who has been with the force for 22 years – the last four as a mem­ber of the CPT.

He ex­plained: “We are very pro-ac­tive and there is great sat­is­fac­tion when we take drugs and knives off the streets. Our job is to make life un­com­fort­able for crim­i­nals and dis­rupt their ac­tiv­i­ties.

“We can be op­er­a­tional any time of the night or day.

“Ar­rests for the pos­ses­sion of knives are of­ten re­lated to drugs, which we ob­vi­ously treat very se­ri­ously.”

Sgt Todd says the team also car­ries out reg­u­lar ‘wel­fare checks’ at prop­er­ties where peo­ple known to be vul­ner­a­ble may be tar­geted by drug deal­ers – the prac­tice known as ‘cuck­oo­ing’.

“We work with var­i­ous other polic­ing teams as well as us­ing CCTV, au­to­matic num­ber plate recog­ni­tion and other in­tel­li­gence sources to track sus­pects,” he said.

In the last week, the team notched up sev­eral sig­nif­i­cant drug-re­lated ar­rests.

On Fri­day af­ter­noon, an 18-year-old man from the Can­ter­bury area was ar­rested in God­den Road on sus­pi­cion of deal­ing co­caine and heroin.

Two mo­bile phones and around 50 wraps of class A drugs were seized.

He has been re­leased while in­ves­ti­ga­tions con­tinue.

On Mon­day, a 19-year-old man sus­pected of the same of­fences was ar­rested in Tour­tel Road, Can­ter­bury.

Officers seized about 10 wraps of a class A drug and two mo­bile phones.

Dur­ing a sub­se­quent search of his home a fur­ther 160 wraps of a class A drug and a third mo­bile phone were seized.

He has been re­leased while in­ves­ti­ga­tions con­tinue.

The fol­low­ing day a 16-year-old boy from the dis­trict was ar­rested in Cas­tle Street, Can­ter­bury, on sus­pi­cion of deal­ing cannabis. Officers seized about 15 bags of cannabis and two mo­bile phones.

‘There is great sat­is­fac­tion when we take drugs and knives off the streets. Our job is to make life un­com­fort­able for crim­i­nals’

Pic­ture: Kent Police

Se­lec­tion of tweets from the Can­ter­bury Com­mu­nity Polic­ing Team about knife con­fis­ca­tions

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