Katherine police have launched a year-long operation to crack down on shop break-ins.
Operation Pelion is a direct response to community fears on a big jump in local crime.
Police statistics show shop break-ins have risen more than 160 per cent in Katherine over the past year, the biggest jump of anywhere in the NT.
Police say they will use an evidence-based and intelligence-informed approach to target commercial unlawful entries in Katherine.
Operation Pelion is now underway in the region to target an increase in this type of crime.
“The year-long operation which started this week will help businesses in our region,” Katherine Division Superintendent Daniel Shean said.
“We’re using our intelligence products, including data produced by parts of the agency, like the Territory Intelligence Coordination Centre to target recidivist offenders,” he said.
The Territory Intelligence Coordination Centre in Darwin was opened by the NT Government in 2017 which includes the co-location of representatives from several Territory Government agencies including Territory Families and Housing & Education - to bring a more collaborative and early intervention approach to tackling crime and anti-social behaviour.
“We know that the community is concerned about this issue right now. We’ve listened to them and we’re responding,” Supt Shean said.
“NT Police can’t solve the situation by ourselves, so we’re also looking at a number of strategies, including multiagency approaches, to reduce the desire and ability for repeat offenders to commit crimes,” Superintendent Shean said.
Local businesses are being encouraged to take advantage of grant programs such as Biz Secure and Alcohol Secure as part of a proactive crime prevention approach in the region.
Operation Pelion is:
- Conducting repeat victim engagement – victims will be re-empowered and at every possible opportunity, be a part of the judicial process;
- Reviewing finalised unlawful entry cases to ascertain whether there are other avenues of enquiry;
- Finalising current unlawful entry cases where there is forensic or fingerprint evidence;
- Conducting daily audits of unlawful entry cases to ensure best practice and improved governance and accountability; and
- Carrying out covert and overt policing activities in known hotspots.
“Op Pelion is seeking to reduce property crime in Katherine,” Supt Shean said.
“We need our community to have confidence in our police force, and this is one of the ways that we’re looking at maintaining a safer Northern Territory.
“We’re pursuing all options available to us under the law, including arresting youths involved in these types of activities. Where justified and lawful, they will be interviewed and processed through the Watch House and their DNA, fingerprints and photographs obtained.”
Members of the community can assist police by reporting any suspicious or antisocial behaviour to 131 444 or Crime Stoppers anonymously on 1800 333 000.
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