‘Bring back bobbies on the street’ says Rosemary Westwell of Ely

COLUMN: Rosemary Westwell asks ‘are we really in the Christmas spirit this year?’

COLUMN: Rosemary Westwell asks ‘are we really in the Christmas spirit this year?’ - Credit: Archant

Bring back bobbies on the street. In the good old days, when someone committed a crime all you had to do was to report it and something would be done.

The perpetrator of the crime would probably be known and soon caught and sorted. Those who committed the worst crimes would be put in jail and stay there. We could feel safe in our beds.

What happens now? You phone a number. If the crime is serious, yes, someone usually turns up but if not, after some delay, you get a crime number. Gee thanks. That really helps – with the paperwork. What about the offenders? They still get off scott free while the depleted police force simply don’t have the manpower to apprehend them.

Once the petty criminals are caught, after a long delay while they are on bail (often continuing their offending), they are finally brought to court where, more often than not, the magistrates do not have the powers to give them punishments that fit the crimes.

If it is theft, then why aren’t the offenders put in jail and made to work to earn enough money to pay back the people who have had their precious items stolen?

How on earth has a local petty criminal been able to commit not one, but TWENTY EIGHT offences before he is prosecuted? One should be enough!

They had the manpower to offer help and support to try and stop him offending but apparently in this case it was to no avail. We want more police, not do-gooders. This lily-livered approach obviously doesn’t work, so why aren’t they changing the system to one that does work?

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Apparently our local petty criminal has a drug problem. Why not sort this out first? There should be hostels that are well staffed, where drug addicts are made to come off the drugs and learn how to work for a living. If they slip up once after they leave, then it is back to jail and work.

If criminals blatantly swan about in cars that are not licensed and that don’t have an MOT or insurance because they cannot be bothered or they don’t have the cash, take the car away from them and sell it. Then they will have cash.

Worse than this is the case of the serial rapist who is believed to have attacked at least 100 women in London. He has recently been let free by the parole board. Quite rightly, the victims are up in arms.

So, what is being offered? The victims might be allowed to know why the parole board considered him no longer a risk. This is not good enough. It is time for change.