Mildura Weekly : Friday April 1 Vol 10 No 21
NEWS 05 FRIDAY, APRIL 1, 2016 MILDURAWEEKLY.COM.AU • From Page 3 “Most of our elderly citizens grew up in an era where people were as- sumed to have honourable intentions until the contrary was proven. “Unfortunately, in today’s society healthy cynicism can be your greatest protection.” Insp. Nolan said one of the key messages police were now trying to enforce within the community was “if you’re unsure, don’t open the door”. “If someone that you don’t know comes to your door, exercise caution. Don’t feel obligated to open the door and certainly don’t let them in,” he said. “If you have any doubt, lock your house and ring family members, po- lice or neighbours for assistance. “Unfortunately these types of scammers will always be around, so as a community it’s our duty to make it hard for them.” Insp. Nolan said that while areas like family violence, assault-related of- fences, and aggravated burglary need- ed to be addressed, many other areas of crime in the region had fallen sig- nificantly over the years. “Looking at the Crime Statistics Agency figures for our region run- ning from 2011 through to 2015, you can see that in a lot of areas we have actually made inroads,” he said. “For example, the number of sex offences recorded in 2011 was 209, in 2015 we were down to 134. “Robbery, which peaked in 2012 at 38, is down to 15 recorded offences in 2015. “When you look at other regional areas where crime has increased by 10 to 20 percent, it is apparent that crime strategies in Mildura are working. “Mildura has been a beneficiary of government decisions to increase po- lice numbers, and as a result, we have more police cars on the road, we have more foot patrols, we have established a dedicated Family Violence Unit and we can better engage with the commu- nity – particularly where we have iden- tified problems. “The effectiveness of our tasking is evidenced by our arrest rates. We maintain one of highest offender ar- rest rates in the State.” Insp. Nolan said this was evident in the number of arrests made in rela- tion to drug offences. According to the Crime Statistics Agency, the number of people caught dealing or trafficking drugs in Mildura has risen by 152 percent in the past five years, while those caught cultivat- ing or manufacturing drugs has also risen 50 percent in that time. Drug use and possession numbers have also risen significantly since 2011, up 109 percent. “The arrest of offenders for drug- related crimes is often an indication of police effectiveness, particularly their ability to gather intelligence and con- duct investigations,” Insp. Nolan said. “Mildura police meet at least once a fortnight with all of our investigative units to discuss crime trends and pre- ventative strategies that we can put in place. “A major focus is recidivist offend- ers, as we know that a very small per- centage of the population are respon- sible for a very large proportion of our crime. “Arresting our most prolific of- fenders goes a long way to increasing community confidence and safety.” Family violence, assaults top list By VINNIE RODI OUTGOING Wentworth Shire Councillor Bob Wheeldon has fired a parting shot at the New South Wales Government, labelling it “a two out of 10 government”. Resigning as a councillor effective immedi- ately on Tuesday this week, Mr Wheeldon said it was disappointing that NSW Premier Mike Baird had failed to visit Wentworth. “The NSW Premier, past or present, hasn’t bothered to visit Wentworth for five years, de- spite numerous invitations,” he said. “Unfor- tunately, we have a very city-focused State Gov- ernment, one that is ignoring everything this Council is laying on the plate for them. “I think if their performance doesn’t im- prove, it could lead to people wanting to get rid of them. “People in Wentworth need a fairer go, and I hope we start getting a better performance from our State Government, because they have been poor on a lot of issues important to this Shire.” Mr Wheeldon’s resignation from Council follows a recent two-month leave of absence. He had previously come under public scru- tiny following his interest in several planning developments before Council, most notable a Pomona rezoning request. Mr Wheeldon said in a media statement on Wednesday that he had strictly separated his business affairs from his Council role, while clar- ifying that his decision to resign had not been prompted by public perception. • Continued Page 8 Wheeldon launches scathing attack on State’s performance Mildura BMW Sales Finance Service Parts Introducing a born competitor bred for one purpose only – to be the best. The new BMW 1 Series is sportier inside and out with even more of that unmistakable BMW character, while the latest BMW Tw inPower Tu rbo engines deliver a truly dynamic driving experience. Connect to the road and the world around you like never before with Rear View Camera and BMW ConnectedDrive* Lifestyle package including Remote Ultimate Driving Machine that’s as lively as it looks. Go one better in the new BMW 1 Series. Ta ke a test-drive at Mildura BMW today. drive away^ $49,900 The new BMW 125i with M Sport Pack from Mildura BMW Cnr Seventh St & Etiwanda Ave, Mildura. 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Friday March 25 Vol 10 No 20
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