“I go to bed at 2-3 o’clock in the morning cause I’m terrified to go to bed, I don’t have an alarm system because I can’t afford it. Yes, I can call the police, but by the time the police come, they are probably already in the house,” said a Prospect resident.
It’s a concern many residents shared at Monday’s (6 March) public meeting at McRuss Carpark in Prospect. On hand to hear those concerns was Police Commissioner Derek Byrne, who acknowledged their fears.
“A shootout lasted just a couple of seconds did take place, and fortuitously nobody was killed or injured in that shootout, a very serious situation on your streets, in your communities and I and my colleagues understand the anxiety that causes,” said Mr. Byrne.
Commissioner Byrne was pressed by residents, they wanted answers on how the police intend to deal with crime at a community level.
“How good is the relationship with the police with communities and getting information from people?” asked another resident.
“Unfortunately, we do not have a lot of information being shared with us at the moment, one of the basic underpinnings of the community policing programme is that members of the community will have the confidence to speak to police officers,” said Mr Byrne. He assured the public that the new community policing initiative will improve relationships and get the information needed.
One resident suggested cameras as a possible tool to help catch criminals, especially in light of Saturday’s (3 March) robberies and shootout.
“This area does not allow cameras, what is the possibility of placing camera’s on these three main roads and on the front, to catch anyone in the process, in the future to come,” the Commissioner said.
Commissioner Byrne said he would look into implementing cameras on the streets suggested by residents. The Prospect Council also announced plans to implement a community-wide alarm system.