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Police collision investigation unit

Officers are investigating after a motorcyclist was killed following a collision in Sutton Coldfield yesterday (Friday).

The motorcyclist was travelling along Darnick Road, Boldmere around 4.50pm when it was in collision with a vehicle.

The rider suffered fatal injuries; the driver of the car was not injured.

The family of the man who died have been informed and are being supported by specialist officers.

Anyone who witnessed the collision should call officers in the collision investigation unit on 101.

At Tamworth Informed are thoughts are with the family and friends of those involved, along with those that attended the scene.

PC Emma Agyei

ONE of the country’s top cops is personally taking steps to highlight the impact of officers or police staff being assaulted or abused on our streets.

Two officers or police staff report being assaulted or racially or verbally abused every day in the West Midlands.

Between April and December 2017, 669 assaults on West Midlands officers and staff were recorded. As a result, 356 days were lost as the brave bobbies recovered from their injuries with a cost equivalent to around £65,000 in sick pay. And the problem is growing.

PC Emma Agyei was assaulted in May 2017 after being called to a domestic incident on Chapel Street, Bradley.

The footage below, from her body-cam shows the moment she is forced to the floor by a 24-year-old man who beats her and rips out a large chunk of her hair.

Emma’s attacker pleaded guilty to assault and was given a 12 weeks suspended sentence.

Chief Constable Dave Thompson, said: “I am stepping up to highlight the impact of assaults on our communities. Officers, PCSOs and staff are often the first and last line of defence.

“Our officers will always do the right thing and routinely put themselves in harm’s way to protect the public, but we need to bring to justice criminals who think that it is okay to abuse and hit out.

“Time off recovering from a senseless attack is time taken away from the very communities that need them policing their streets and protecting them.”

From 2018 cases where cop attackers are brought before the courts will include a personal statement from the Chief.

In the document – known as an impact statement – Dave Thompson will personally outline to the magistrate or judge and jury the effect the attack has had on the force, and its wider implications for the people of the region by having one of their protectors off patrol because of their injuries.

The move comes with the backing of the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) who are the independent prosecutors in criminal cases in England and Wales. Their job is to make sure the right person is prosecuted for the right offence and offenders are brought to justice.

The personal statement, written by the Chief, will be used during sentencing and allows the judge to take into consideration the impact the assault has had on the force, the officer’s family and the public. It will be used in conjunction with statements from the victim.

“When it comes to prosecuting suspects, we have been working closely with CPS in our region.” said Dave Thompson.

“We will be making sure that for each prosecution of an assault on one of our officers or staff, the court understands the impact this has on us, our families, our workplace and the policing of the West Midlands.”

In the last three years, 2,336 assaults on police officers have been recorded. Of these, 89 were police community support officers and 131 were custody staff.

“The figures are unacceptable and we must work harder as a force to protect our officers and staff.

“No officer or member of staff should come to work and accept that being assaulted or abused is simply part of the job.

“As a victim of crime, they will be offered the same service any member of the public would expect. As an employer, we’re doing the right thing and adding in an additional layer of support.”

Dave Thompson became Chief Constable in January 2016 and pledged to do more on staff wellbeing. As well as introducing more staff welfare support services, he has backed the Police Federation’s Protect the Protectors campaign and overseen the introduction of spit guards, body worn video and double-shot Taser to help with officer safety.

He added: “All too often police officers and staff are subjected to assaults and threats. While the severity of such attacks changes, the impact upon society does not. It is never acceptable to assume that assaults upon police officers and staff should be tolerated, they are not ‘part of the job’.”

Backing the Chief Constable’s tough stance, Police and Crime Commissioner David Jamieson said: “I am pleased that the Chief Constable is getting tough on these unacceptable crimes.

“The police protect the public, it is therefore important we protect our officers, PCSOs and staff too.

“Officers and staff should not have to put up with violence and assaults whilst keeping the public safe.

“West Midlands Police takes assaults against its staff and officers incredibly seriously. The force will do all in its power to bring those who commit such crimes to justice.”

Palace of Westminster from across the Thames

HELLO and welcome to my first View from the House of 2018 for Tamworth Informed.

It was a busy start to the year with the Prime Minister calling a reshuffle of her Cabinet and ministers on Monday morning. Although there were only a few movements at Secretary of State-level, the most interesting changes were at Minister-level where a number of more recently elected MPs were brought in. The team is fresh, excited and full of positive ideas.  I personally think this is an exciting development and I’ll be watching what my colleagues are able to achieve.

I was also delighted to return to the Whips’ Office and have become Deputy Chief Whip. My job will be to help the Chief Whip ensure that legislation passes through Parliament as smoothly as possible and that the day-to-day business of the Government continues as usual.

The Whips’ Office has seldom been busier than at present in this political climate, which means it is a very exciting time to be involved. Coming forward in the next few months will be a series of key pieces of legislation which Parliament must pass and be made into law if we are to secure a Brexit which is in the country’s interest.

However, Brexit will not just be the only agenda item of the Government for this year. The Prime Minister has already made her intentions clear that the environment will be a top priority. She has announced a number of proposals already, such as rolling out carrier bag charges to smaller businesses, discouraging single-use plastics, encouraging supermarkets to implement a ‘non-plastic’ aisle, and investigating a ‘latte levy’ of a charge on non-recyclable coffee cups. This is all vital work to leave the environment in a better place than that which we found it. And it will contribute to making Tamworth all the more green and clean.  All of these changes can only occur however if legislation is in place; which is where the Whips’ Office comes in to ensure it is passed.

All the change in Westminster, however, does not stop me working hard to represent those living in Tamworth and the surrounding areas. As 2018 progresses, I want to continue working to understand mental health provision in the area and how it may be improved. I also want to work to ensure that the rollout of Universal Credit, which has been so prominent in the national media, is effective and smooth in Tamworth. The initial noises are that it has been successful, however, I soon have a meeting with the Job Centre to go over the detail and make sure it will continue to work for everyone.

There will likely be some changes to the funding for our schools also this year. The new formula which the Government has suggested it will introduce will mean that the average funding for schools in Tamworth will raise just under 4% per year.

In the meantime, if you have any concerns I’m always available via my email address [email protected].

Best wishes,

Chris

Role of an MP

In our exclusive video interview, you can learn more about the role of an MP.

 

logs in fireplace with flames

STAFFORDSHIRE Fire and Rescue Service is asking residents to keep warm safely following a house fire in Burton.

The Service was called at 7.45pm on January 9 to Queensland Crescent after reports of a fire in the bedroom.

When the crew arrived they found an electric back heater pad had been placed in the resident’s bed which had overheated and smouldered through the bedding. The 93-year-old had taken the pad and the blankets and put them in the bath.

Station Manager John Kitchener said: “Fortunately this incident did not develop into a full blaze and was actually out when we arrived. As the heat pad was under blankets it could easily have set these alight and caused a far more serious fire.

“This type of pad is not designed to be used in this way and we urge residents to use any products that admit heat inline with its instructions and guidelines. We also advise anyone who discovers a fire in their home to get out, stay out. Although we understand why the lady removed the pad and blankets the safest thing to do is to leave the property and call us.

“This incident is the second this week to involve an elderly person trying to keep warm although thankfully this incident did not have the same tragic outcome. This particular resident had mobility issues. These are two factors highlighted in the SAME campaign which aims to make people aware of the four factors which increase the likelihood of dying in a fire. These are Smoking, Alcohol, Mobility issues and being Elderly.

“Please keep warm safely and if you need any information on heating on your home call our free Community Advice Team on 0800 0241 999.”

For more information visit www.staffordshirefire.gov.uk/wintersafety.asp

four police cars with lights

WEST MIDLANDS Ambulance Service have said that “nothing could be done” to save a twenty-year-old man who was pulled from the canal yesterday, Wednesday 10 January.

Officers from Staffordshire Police along with Medical staff from West Midlands Ambulance Service attended the scene at Kettlebrook Road at around 1:50pm yesterday.

After arriving at the scene, police were seen to tape off a section of the road which crossed the canal, along with the tow path. This is standard procedure in an incident such as this.

The body, now confirmed to be that of a twenty-year-old man, was removed from the canal, close to Tamworth Cruising Club and what was once the Barge & Barrel public house.

West Midlands Ambulance Service said that when the patient was fetched out [of the water] it became apparent that nothing could be done to save them and they were pronounced dead at the scene.

A spoksperson for Staffordshire Police has said: “There were no suspicious circumstances and we will not be investigating.

“This was a tragic accident in which a 20-year-old man lost his life.”

The identify of the person has not been released at this time. Our thoughts are with his friends and family, along with persons that attended the scene.

The area remained cordoned off by Police for over two and half hours and the road was reopened at around 4:30pm.

WMAS ambulance and car

A BODY has been pulled from the Coventry Canal in Kettlebrook today, Wednesday 10 January.

Officers from Staffordshire Police along with Medical staff from West Midlands Ambulance Service attended the scene at Kettlebrook Road at around 1:50pm today.

After arriving at the scene, police were seen to tape off a section of the road which crossed the canal, along with the tow path. This is standard procedure in an incident such as this.

The body, believed to be that of a man, was removed from the canal, close to Tamworth Cruising Club and what was once the Barge & Barrel public house.

West Midlands Ambulance Service said that when the patient was fetched out [of the water] it became apparent that nothing could be done to save them and they were pronounced dead at the scene.

A spokesperson for Staffordshire said that there was nothing to suggest the discovery was suspicious.

The identify of the person has not been released at this time. Our thoughts are with his friends and family, along with persons that attended the scene.

The area remained cordoned off by Police for over two and half hours and the road was reopened at around 4:30pm.

Staffordshire Fire and Rescue service crest

STAFFORDSHIRE Fire and Rescue Service is urging residents to keep warm safely after a fire investigation found an open fire was involved in the incident where a woman sadly died in Withington.

The Service was called to Withington Lane, close to Uttoxeter, on January 9 at 8.08am and firefighters wore breathing apparatus and used a hose reel jet to put out the fire. Sadly the 85-year-old already passed away and her dog had also died in the blaze.

Fire Investigation Officer Brian Griffiths said: “This was a really tragic accident which sadly saw a woman lose her life and our thoughts are with the lady’s friends and family at this difficult time.

“A fire investigation has found the woman was trying to light an open fire with a match when her clothes set alight. This incident serves as a stark reminder of the dangers of open fires and to keep warm safely. This woman was elderly which is highlighted in our SAME campaign. The campaign aims to raise awareness that Smoking Alcohol Mobility issues and being Elderly make people more vulnerable to dying in a fire in their home.

“If you know of someone who is vulnerable or elderly that haven’t received a free Safe and Well visit from us please get in touch with our Community Advice Team on 0800 0241 999. We are also keen to hear from those people who may have received a Safe and Well visit previously but whose circumstances, such as medical conditions, have changed since we last came around.”

Crews tackle the fire in Withington

For information about smoke alarms and staying safe and well in your home, ring the Service’s Community Advice Team on 0800 0241 999 or visit www.staffordshirefire.gov.uk

At Tamworth Informed, our thoughts are with the ladies family and friends, along with those that attended the tragic incident.

police axon body 2 camera

STAFFORDSHIRE Police is currently issuing all of their 1300 front line officers across the county with new personal-issue Body Worn Video (BWV) cameras – giving them greater capability to record evidence and incidents while out on patrol.

Police and Crime Commissioner for Staffordshire, Matthew Ellis, originally instigated the body worn video initiative back in 2012, making Staffordshire the first police force in the country to use the technology.

The first issue of body cameras has since proved to be a major asset in local policing, as Assistant Chief Constable Nick Adderley says: “BWV has proven to be a highly effective tool in gathering vital evidence and in securing guilty pleas from offenders as well as delivering real time transparency of the actions and decisions of those officers and staff who are wearing them.

“This is really important for both the officers and staff, as well as the community, as it allows for a greater level of accountability for our actions, therefore promoting confidence in the work that we do. As a pioneering force for this technology, we continue to develop and use this approach and are now in the process of replacing the 2012 issue cameras, with a new model that will give our officers and staff greater capability in capturing evidence. The new cameras have sharper images, enhanced sound quality and improved image capture at night.

“Every front line officer and PCSO will be personally issued with a new body worn video camera. This will continue to prove invaluable in securing best evidence, helping protect the public, as well as our staff, and providing greater reassurance in our policing services – helping us to keep our communities safer in Staffordshire.”

This is an example of teh footage from the BWV cameras issues to Staffordshire Police:

The initiative to equip all front line officers has been funded by Police and Crime Commissioner for Staffordshire, Matthew Ellis, who said: “Back in 2013, I offered Staffordshire Police the chance to equip all frontline officers with body worn video. Staffordshire was the first in the UK to do that and during the last four years they have proved their worth in helping to protect officers as well as ensuring the public are dealt with appropriately.

“Police services across the UK are now adopting this technology for the first time and officers, here in Staffordshire, have been pivotal over recent years in developing the way body worn video is used.

“It’s now time to replace the original kit as part of on-going technology investment for Staffordshire Police to ensure they have the tools for the job in an ever more complex policing environment.”

The new cameras have been given the thumbs up with front line officer, PCSO Dan Wilson from Staffordshire Police saying: “If I have to present evidence in court, the cameras record evidence from my perspective and present what I see and hear.

“The cameras capture everything as it happens, once the person on the other side of the camera realises they are being filmed they often calm down; it’s a fantastic tool for de-escalating situations.”

Additionally, officers have praised the range of improved features that include a wider lens that can capture images at 145 degrees, increased battery life, better sound and image capture, improved night time recording and as a key feature, recording footage on a 30 second loop.

PC Sean Regan from Staffordshire Police, said: “The pre-record function is excellent as it gives me a tool to record spontaneous incidents as they occur. I’ve also found the cameras to be highly effective in gathering evidence when attending domestic incidents, as the they capture the emotions and the voice of the victim.”

Staffordshire Police, the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner and their strategic partner Boeing Defence UK Ltd are now in the process of issuing 1300+ new cameras to all officers across Staffordshire. The new personal issue cameras have been deployed in Stafford, Longton and Tamworth will continue to be issued throughout the county up and until March 2018.

The Police and Crime Commissioner for Staffordshire, and Boeing Defence UK Ltd, have entered into a Strategic IT Partnership. This partnership is to help equip the police in Staffordshire with the tools to do the job, whilst recognising the changing face of crime. It is to help make Staffordshire Police the most technologically advanced police force in the country.

Police Speed

MORE than 80 motorists are facing prosecution after being caught driving at excessive speeds on two of Staffordshire’s main roads over the weekend.

On Saturday 6 January, temporary speed enforcement cameras clocked 59 drivers travelling at more than 90mph on the A50 near to Uttoxeter.

The road crime team moved to the A38 in the Burton-upon-Trent area on Sunday 7 January and captured another 24 vehicles doing similar speeds. All the drivers caught will be prosecuted.

Both roads were chosen for the crackdown because of the number of casualties and lives claimed in road traffic incidents at these accident blackspots.

Sergeant James Ralph, from the road crime team, said: “Speed limits are there to keep our roads safe; there is a direct correlation between the speed of a vehicle and the severity of the consequence. If you are speeding then you are more likely to be involved in a collision, and the consequences are likely to be far more serious and potentially fatal.”

POLICE are appealing to the public for information after a number of incidents in Two Gates and Wilnecote over the weekend.

A chip shop, a burger van and lorries were all targetted in the incidents which occurred between Friday 5 January and Monday 8 January.

In the first incident, a Burger Van was broken into on Tame Valley Industrial Estate, Wilnecote. Between 3:30 pm on Friday 5 and 7:15 am on Saturday 6, offender(s) have stolen food including burgers, crisps and drinks before making their escape.

Anyone with any information regarding this is asked to contact Staffordshire Police on 101 quoting incident number 0152 – 06/01/2018.

The second incident was a theft at Pickfords, Tame Valley Industrial Estate.  Over the weekend between Friday 5 and Sunday 7,  offenders who were driving a dark coloured vehicle have forced the metal fencing before going into the compound and stealing batteries from the lorries. One lorry has also had the fuel syphoned.

Anyone with any information regarding this is asked to contact Staffordshire Police on 101 quoting incident number 0073 – 08/01/2018.

In the third incident, there was a break in at the Dug Out Fish Bar in Two Gates.  Between the hours of 12:30 am and 10:30 am on the 8 January, unknown offender(s) have smashed a window and have then gone to the rear of the property and gained access via a window. Offender (s) have then left the premises via the same window without taking anything or damaging anything further.

Anyone with any information regarding this incident is asked to contact Staffordshire Police on 101 quoting incident number 0268 – 08/01/2018

You can also report information about crime by contacting the independent crime-fighting charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or through their Anonymous Online Form at www.crimestoppers-uk.org. No personal details are taken, information cannot be traced or recorded and you will not go to court.

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