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CRIME RISES IN NOTTINGHAMSHIRE AS SYSTEM DEEMED 'LAUGHING STOCK'

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The chair of Nottinghamshire Police Authority has said crime is tearing communities apart because there are not eno...
The chair of Nottinghamshire Police Authority has said crime is tearing communities apart because there are not enough officers to protect them.

John Clarke (Lab) said up to 1,000 extra police officers were needed in the county at a time when violent crime is escalating.

'Communities are disintegrating before our eyes because we don't have the laws or policemen to protect them,' he said.

'As a district and county councillor I see and hear about the effects of crime every day and I know our communities have had enough.'

The last few weeks have seen the murder of Brendon Lawrence in Nottingham, a gang fight in the city centre, an 11-year-old boy wounded with a shotgun in a drive-by shooting and a driver stabbed as he sat in his car. The latest six-monthly figures show an 11% rise in overall crime.

The government is being urged to provide more money to put extra officers on the beat. Ministers are reviewing police funding rules, but Nottinghamshire, which has about 1,600 fewer officers than other counties with similar crime rates, will have to wait until 2003/4 for any extra cash.

Mr Clarke and the Nottinghamshire Police Federation says red tape is interfering with front-line policing.

He slammed plans to make officers fill in forms every time they stop someone. 'The system is a laughing stock,' he said.

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