Welcome to this weeks rural crime newsletter. Below there is a summary of some the incidents across Norfolk. We would like to thank you for all your calls to Norfolk Constabulary; every piece of information, no matter how small helps us make Norfolk a safer county. If you do not wish to leave your details, you can also call anonymously or via Crime Stoppers.
There have been a few calls now relating to illegal metal detecting across historic sites in Norfolk. This illegal activity should not be confused with the person who legally seeks permission to detect on land and reports the finds they discover (The detectors Code of Practice is available at http://finds.org.uk/getinvolved/guides/codeofpractice).
Nighthawking is trespassing on land and the (attempted) theft of artifacts (Treasures Act 1996 / Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Act 1979). The items discovered may be sold for personal gain and the historic data that could be lost is priceless. If you see Nighthawks on land, day or night, please call 999 as this is a crime in progress. Try to take down information like, vehicle details, actions of the person, equipment seen and clothing worn by the person. Please do not approach them, call the Police immediately.
On Thursday 02nd February at Squires Drove in Three Holes, a white male in his 40s was stopped and arrested in connection to impersonating a Police Officer. One reported stated that the vehicle was displaying blue flashing lights to the front.
At Wisbech a male was stopped in a white Fiat Van and subsequently arrested for running his vehicle on ‘Green Diesel’.
A male from the Wisbech area was located asleep in a vehicle containing several believed stolen vehicle type batteries. He was arrested for the suspected thefts. a second vehicle was also seized in relation to the male.
Policing Patrols in the west of the county have yielded 20 vehicle seizures between 13th January and 2nd February 2017. These were for Section 165- driving without a Licence for the class of vehicle or not having Insurance on the vehicle.
Lynford Lakes, near Mundford. The lakes are being actively targetted for illegal fishing. Several small areas of trees, bushes and scrub have been cleared illegally to create fishing swims around the lakes. There are no rights to fish the lakes at Lynford within the Forestry Commission land, these waters are patrolled by the Environment Agency with several fines being issued for illegal fishing. There is a risk to waterfowl on the lakes due to Set Line fishing, these are lines which are staked or tied to the bank with single or multiple baited hooks to catch fish, this practice under the ‘Salmon and Freshwater Fisheries Act 1975’ is banned.
To fish in the UK, you need a current Rod License issued by the Environment Agency from the age of 12yrs. (Local Byelaws apply)
Norfolk Police assisted in retrieving a stolen wood chipper from Cambridgeshire. The GPS tracker activated and was traced successfully by Officers close by. This will be forensically examined and can then be returned to the owner.
In South Creake, St Marys Church was the victim of a theft when a crucifix was stolen from the church.
We would like to thank you for all your calls regarding Heritage crime.
Each call helps Norfolk Police tackle the Heritage Crime, St Georges Church in Gooderstone, where two males were seen in suspcious Circumstances. Local Officers were able to attend the area quickly and ensure all was in order.
In Bylaugh, a small blue car was sighted driving around the private addresses. An index was passed through to Police so we can continue the investigation, following up any suspicious activity.
You are our eyes and ears and we depend on your assistance to reduce rural crime.
Farm and Agriculture
In Narborough a white flat bed tipper truck pulled onto land containing metal containers and chicken sheds. One male walked round before leaving swiftly after being spotted.
In Saham Toney an energiser stolen from the edge of a field containing sheep. The energiser has been property marked.
At Hingham £25 of eggs taken from a road side vender. There is good quality CCTV on site and this shows a vehicle and persons to help us follow up the investigation.
In Necton concerns were raised after outbuildings were broken into and searched. A white van type vehicle had been seen making off with a potential leaking sump.
At Croxton 3 hooded males in dark clothing were seen behind a log pile behind a property. When sighted, they then made off into woodland away from the address. Nothing was taken or disturbed at the property.
Heating Oil Theft
In Bawdeswell half a tank of heating oil has been stolen. The tank lid being removed and is now missing. The owner had left the address for a short time, but returned to see muddy tracks around the property.
At Sloley near Norwich a heating oil theft of up to 500ltrs was reported. Evidence was recovered at the scene for CSI examination.
In Garboldisham, a small theft of heating oil occurred about 2 weeks previously which was not reported. There has now been a second substantial theft of about 500ltrs stolen.
The Op Randall team would like to thank you all for your calls and emails regarding hare coursing, it is now the time of year where we may see some incidents and your information is key to helping us catch these offenders. Please report any suspicious activity including vehicles to us as soon as possible.
We have received reports of coursing during daylight and nightime hours. These are manily around the Outwell, Marham, Swardeston and Keswick areas. Lamps have been visible across the fields and dogs seen running in the light beam pursing hare. At Feltwell, a green Subaru Forester was seen driving around, potentially looking for a coursing location.
Potential deer poaching has being reported out at Blickling, Worstead Park, Merton and further incidents at Catfield. 4×4 vehicles are being reported driving around land without permission.
A green Mitsubishi Shogun/Pajero was reported at Downham Market and Winfarthing for trespassing on farm land. The suspicion was for hare coursing. No coursing was witnessed and when stopped by local Officers, the dogs in the vehicle were clean.
Wildlife Crime: WildlifeCrime@norfolk.pnn.police.uk
If you are aware of an incident or offence taking place there and then or shortly afterwards please dial 999. The above inbox will not be monitored 24/7 but it will provide you with a direct way to contact our Wildlife Crime Officers. We look forward to hearing from you. Your local Wildlife Crime Officers:
Insp Jon Papworth WCO Lead
Sgt Andy Tomlinson
PCSO Helen Maxwell
PC Ben Clark
Kings Lynn / Downham Market
Pc Maria Asker
PC Jim Squires
PS Richard Bedder
PC Jason Pegden
PC Stu Doe
DI Tom SMITH
PCSO Mac Cornaby
There was an attempted theft of Snowdrops from a garden Nursery at Wisbech. Multiple trays containing several hundred plants were moved in an attempt to collect them at a later time. Wild Snowdrops are protected under CITES (Convention of International Trade in Endangered Species – of Wild Fauna and Flora) for the international sale and distribution is tightly controlled.
The Snowdrop bulb themselves can be poisonous if eaten but can be used to act as a Deer and Squirrel deterrent in flower beds (From the Countryfile website).
Pink is the colour-
DC Andy Brown reminds you that a simple spray of florescent pink paint will make your batteries un-attractive to thieves.
Whilst the offenders are on your land looking for stolen batteries, what else are they looking at?
Are you leaving yourself vulnerable to further incidents?
We would encourage all subscribers to Property Mark your items. This can be as easy as post-coding items or using products like SelectaDNA or Smartwater which can be easily applied to smaller items which helps identify them, combined with clear signage- this will dissuade thieves.
We would like to thank you all for the ongoing support you provide Norfolk Police.
Have a good weekend, from the Op Randall team.