Police cuts rubbished

WA’S police minister, the Fremantle police district superintendent and mayor Brad Pettitt have all rejected a tipoff to the Herald about cuts to cops on the beat.

Earlier this week a local police officer told the Herald there was concern in the ranks that bike patrols and other beats would be cut so officers could be sent to man the Cottesloe police station. The officer was also concerned a crackdown in the Perth CBD would push antisocial behaviour to Freo where there wouldn’t be the resources to deal with them.

But Supt Andy Russell says under changes introduced by new WA police commissioner Chris Dawson to reinstate a Fremantle police district, there’d be a greater police presence in the city.

Supt Russell says Fremantle will take over responsibility for the Cottesloe station as well as Mosman Park and Peppermint Grove, but had been adequately resourced.

“In fact the community will see a larger police presence in the Fremantle CBD and entertainment precinct especially as we move towards summer, being beats/bike patrols,” he said.

Supt Russell says they’ll be monitoring any impact on Fremantle following the  Perth crack-down.

Police minister Michelle Roberts says any suggestions of cuts to beats was “simply mischievous”.

“Fremantle will be returned to a district in its own right and this will result in more uniformed police available for both patrols and response.”

Mayor Brad Pettitt says the council has worked well with police to reduce low-level crime and anti-social behaviour and is keen to keep doing so under the new structure.

by STEVE GRANT

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