Police need to up the number of patrols in Bo’ness if a recent spike in criminal behaviour is to be meaningfully addressed in the town.
That is the view of MSP Angus MacDonald, who believes that special measures must be taken in light of a well-documented increase in break-ins to both homes and business premises in recent weeks.
Mr MacDonald has said he does not have a problem with policing in Bo’ness in general but that the closure of the town’s historic police station in Commissioner Street five years ago calls for a more proactive approach.
He stated: “I am confident that the police are handling any complaints made to them regarding break-ins in the Bo’ness area with the seriousness they deserve – and I trust that they are taking all steps which are necessary and available to them to investigate these matters.
“With that in mind, I am much more supportive of seeing police on the streets, engaging with the public wherever the public are, rather than being cocooned away in an office in a building which is closed to the public.
“The changing nature of our police services require them to be more visible within our communities, with or without a building. However, in light of the recent reports of break-ins, I would call on the police to increase their presence and patrols in Bo’ness to strengthen the deterrent against any crime.”
In response, Local Area Commander, Chief Inspector Damian Armstrong said: “Bo’ness is served by a dedicated Community Policing Team, engaged with and working in the local community.
“Bo’ness Academy has a dedicated school’s based officer and outwith these officers’ working hours, Bo’ness is covered by response policing colleagues, providing a visible presence and dealing with incidents. The team is contactable by phone and email, the details of which are available on the Police Scotland website pages.
“Officers attend public events and the community council where they are appraised of ongoing concerns and provide a monthly report, as well as carrying out their established, dedicated patrols in Bo’ness.
“Recently there have been concerns raised regarding crime in this area. Officers are working with specialist colleagues, including CID and the Priority Crime Team, to identify those responsible. Additional patrols have been put in place across the Falkirk area to assist in dealing with criminals intent on committing break-ins and this is being undertaken in conjunction with neighbouring divisions.”