Sussex Police has launched a new rural crime team, whose overall aim is to crack down on unlawful behaviour in isolated communities.
The team will have a specialist focus on agricultural, equine, wildlife and heritage issues and it has been brought together to serve the rural community, to increase confidence and encourage reporting through preventing crime and carrying out more proactive investigations.
Made up of two sergeants, eight constables and six police community support officers (PCSOs), the team will be operating out of bases at Midhurst and Heathfield.
The impact of rural crime has become more apparent in recent years and this is reflected with the implementation of the national Rural Affairs Strategy in 2018, from the National Police Chiefs’ Council (NPCC).
Sussex Police’s own Rural Crime Strategy aims to make rural communities feel safer by building long-lasting partnerships, responding to the community’s needs and provide an effective policing service. In turn, this work aims to increase confidence in the police in our more isolated areas.
With 62% of Sussex’s area dedicated to farming and a significant proportion being in the South Downs National Park, Sussex is defined as ‘significantly rural’ by DEFRA (2011).
Recently, Sussex Police arrested three men near High Hurstwood, Wealden, on suspicion of burglary and going equipped for burglary.
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