Commissioner wants part-time police officers

Northamptonshire Police & Crime Commission Adam Simmonds.

Northamptonshire Police & Crime Commission Adam Simmonds.

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The county’s police and crime commissioner has revealed the outline of his plans for the future policing of the county.

Ahead of publication of the detailed plans in March, Adam Simmonds told the Telegraph his focus remained on cutting gang and drug-based crime.

He also said he wanted to introduce a 200-strong reservist force of part-time officers who would be tasked with responding to some 999 calls.

He said: “We have considerable funding pressures, so how do we put more visible police on the beat? We’ve got to look at doing things differently.

“They would only be used when they were needed. They would be fully trained officers but wouldn’t be paid all the time, only when we need them. I think they would work really well in rural areas. The farming community is concerned they don’t have enough police support, and I understand that because this is a small force.”

Other proposals include alllowing local newspapers to publish more pictures of offenders, to help people see that justice was being done.

He said: “If you misbehave there are consequences.

“It helps people know who you are.”

Concerted efforts to cut drug crime will play a central role in the plans. Mr Simmonds said: “In this county we have the same rate of drug trafficking as London, Greater Manchester and Merseyside. We are committed to reducing violent crime by 40 per cent.”

He also said his respect for police officers had grown since taking office.

Mr Simmonds said: “We can have an awful lot of confidence in them.”