New police unit 'boosts beat patrols'

A NEW investigative branch of Suffolk police has boosted the crime-fighting ability of frontline officers, it has been revealed. Launched in September last year, the Crime Investigation Bureau (CIB) has helped increase the number of police patrols, reducing the average number of crimes frontline officers have to investigate by half.

A NEW investigative branch of Suffolk police has boosted the crime-fighting ability of frontline officers, it has been revealed.

Launched in September last year, the Crime Investigation Bureau (CIB) has helped increase the number of police patrols, reducing the average number of crimes frontline officers have to investigate by half.

In August 2009, police said an officer would typically be investigating around 10.5 crimes at any one time but this figure was reduced to an average of 5.6 crimes as of the end of last month.

The force said this means more frontline officers have been freed up to carry out patrols and police communities around Suffolk.


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The CIB deals with minor, high-volume crimes, including theft and criminal damage, that are not in progress at the time and details of which can be dealt with by the team over the phone.

This allows frontline officers to concentrate on dealing with urgent crimes, incidents and anti-social behaviour.

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A spokeswoman for Suffolk police said analysis of frontline officers' 'live crime' workload since the launch of CIB has shown it is having 'an extremely positive effect on the number of crimes an officer has to deal with at any one time.'

At the end of February the CIB was dealing with 47% of all crimes, up from 37% the previous month. From January until the middle of this month the team have investigated more than 3,500 crimes.

If while investigating crimes a suspect is identified, the CIB arranges an arrest pack containing all the necessary documentation to initiate an arrest.

The packs are passed on to the local response sergeant for action. Since its launch the CIB has produced 516 arrest packs for officers to act upon.

Temporary Assistant Chief Constable Stewart Gull said: 'These figures show that the Crime Investigation Bureau is having a significant impact on the workload of frontline officers.

'Freeing up frontline officer time is crucial if we want to improve the service we provide to our communities and increase people's confidence in what we do. This is about working 'smarter' and making the best use of all staff. Only six months into the CIB being introduced, they are investigating around 47% of all reported crime.

'We hope that this figure will increase even further over the next few months, making a huge difference to the impact our frontline officers can have within communities.'

Investigators within the CIB assess whether further lines of inquiry need to be followed, if not victims are offered a follow up visit from the Safer Neighbourhood Team officer.

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