Agenda and minutes
Scrutiny Panel 1 Serious Acquisitive Crime and Violent Crime/ Community Safety
Wednesday, 15 August 2012 6:00 pm
Venue: The Jeffrey Room, The Guildhall, St. Giles Square, Northampton, NN1 1DE. View directions
Members to note any apologies and substitutions.
Apologies for absence from the meeting were received by Councillor David Palethorpe and Chief Inspector Max Williams.
Members to approve the minutes of the meeting held on 18th June 2012.
The minutes of the meeting held on 18th June 2012 were approved and signed by the Chairman.
Deputations / Public Addresses
The Chair to note public address requests.
The public can speak on any agenda item for a maximum of three minutes per speaker per item. You are not required to register your intention to speak in advance but should arrive at the meeting a few minutes early, complete a Public Address Protocol and notify the Scrutiny Officer of your intention to speak.
Mr John Norrie, Independent candidate for the role of Police and Crime Commissioner introduced himself to the Panel and attended the rest of the meeting. .
Declarations of Interest (Including Whipping)
Members to state any interests.
There were none.
The Panel received a report showing a breakdown of violence offences in Northampton by location type.
The main points of discussion were;-
· The indications were that Domestic Violence, Town Centre and Residual Violence was split roughly three ways and that this has been consistent over the last three years.
· Residual crime included incidents around school and educational premises. Members expressed concerns over this and asked that further details be bought to a future meeting. They were advised that the Community Safety Partnership were aware of this issue and have been investigating intervention workaround schools. It was suggested that Community Safety Officers be asked to attend a future meeting to give more details on the issue.
· There may still be issues of non-reporting. These are reported incidents only and some offences may be particularly prone to under reporting.
· Members felt that it would also be helpful to have the following information:-
1. Breakdown of the victim profile in terms of age, gender, ethnicity.
2. Actual numbers of offences in each category rather than just a percentage
3. A Definition of Violent Crime.
4. Intervention/prevention measures currently undertaken by the Community Safety Partnership.
· Members asked how they, as Councillors, could be involved in Partnership working. They felt that it would be useful for them to know what initiatives were being undertaken in their areas by the Community Safety Partnership.
· They felt that it would be useful to have regularly updated information on the demographics of their areas. It was pointed out that the Council website gives links to that information and that a link could be sent with the next addition of Councillor Connect.
To set the core questions for the witnesses/expert advisors. Draft Core questions attached.
The Panel considered some draft core questions for the witnesses/expert advisors, which are attached as an appendix to the minutes.
The main points of discussion were as follows:-
· Some of the questions should be amended to include questions about how agencies are involved with prevention of crime. Questions were raised about how the effectiveness of prevention can be measured and it was acknowledged that this would vary depending upon the offence and timescales although comparisons over time where most usual.
· Members of the Panel were keen for the expert witnesses to include someone with educational responsibilities, who could explain the issues being faced by schools.
· It was also felt that expert witnesses should be asked what they thought that the role of the Police and Crime Commissioner should be in terms of preventing and tackling serious acquisitive can violent crimes.
· Councillors will also be asked to respond to the core questions through E mail. Members should be encouraged to complete these and this will be promoted through the Overview and Scrutiny Committee and Councillor Connect.