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Rutland Police use Facebook to build relationship with community and give insight into officers’ work

A policing team is giving an insight into work officers do in a bid to increase confidence.

Alongside catching criminals, responding to crashes and supporting victims of crime, police officers in Rutland have added social media to their duties.

“We want to increase confidence and be transparent,” said neighbourhood sergeant Liam Palmer.

Sgt Liam Palmer
Sgt Liam Palmer

On the Rutland Police Facebook page - which was previously used to share official appeals for witnesses and court results - officers have been giving a breakdown into how they spent their shifts.

The informal write ups are aimed at showing police in the county do more than just catching criminals with jobs including speed checks, safeguarding and supporting victims of crime.

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Sgt Palmer said: “It’s a two way street.

Oakham Police Station
Oakham Police Station

“We want to let people know what’s happening and hear about people’s concerns.

“What we don’t know we can’t affect.”

Sgt Palmer became neighbourhood sergeant, replacing Paul Kear, in May 2023 and has taken on responsibility for developing Rutland’s policing response.

Having grown up in Rutland he has an emotional tie to the county and is keen to engage with the community and maintain strong connections.

The PCSOs and police constables often hold beat surgeries to give the people the chance to meet the officers and find out what they do.

Sgt Palmer is also keen for the team to attend local events to engage directly with Rutland residents.

“We like to get ourselves out there and show we are a friendly policing team which likes to make a difference,” he said.

“We all joined for the same reasons - we want to make a positive impact on our communities.

“Part of that is to understand people’s problems and address any concerns they have.”

The Rutland policing team is also using its social media following to highlight campaigns and offer crime prevention advice, which recently has included steps to make vehicles less appealing.

This follows a spate of vehicles being broken into and cars, often keyless, being stolen during the winter months.

“Put the message out that you’ve not got anything worth stealing and back that up by not leaving anything on display,” said Sgt Palmer.

He added: “The more we can make people aware, the more difficult it makes it.”

During the winter months police are also encouraging residents to think about making their house look lived in if they are on holiday or out for the evening by putting lights on timers or by buying TV simulator lights.

“We know there is a cost but it could prevent the house from being burgled,” said Sgt Palmer.

“If a home was broken there would be implications with the cost of insurance and sentimental items being stolen.”

Anti-social behaviour is low-level in Rutland but Sgt Palmer notes it can have a ‘massive effect’ on people’s lives.

There is also a misconception that groups gathering is anti-social when often it is youths meeting up.

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