East Devon set to benefit from increase in police numbers

PUBLISHED: 10:23 19 March 2019 | UPDATED: 10:28 19 March 2019

Devon and Cornwall’s Police and Crime Commissioner Alison Hernandez has said she will only support a merger with Dorset's force if the public are behind it. Picture: OPCC

Devon and Cornwall's Police and Crime Commissioner Alison Hernandez has said she will only support a merger with Dorset's force if the public are behind it. Picture: OPCC

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Devon and Cornwall Police and Crime Commissioner Alison Hernandez says there will be an extra 85 officers by the end of 2020

East Devon is set to directly benefit from an increase in police officers according to the police and crime commissioner.

Alison Hernandez said the recruitment of an extra 85 officers will bolster police numbers to around 3,100 by the end of 2020.

She was speaking in response to the East Devon District Council passing a motion, put forward by councillor Tom Wright, calling for extra police in the region.

Ms Hernandez said: “My team and I speak to people up and down the force area and I regularly hear concerns that echo Cllr Wright’s – people want more police officers in their communities.

“This was confirmed during our work to set the police precept for the next financial year. Most respondents to our poll said they were prepared to pay more to contribute to a police budget that would enable further growth in officer numbers.

“As well as meeting significant increases in costs the 2019-20 budget will allow the Chief Constable to continue with our project to increase force strength, recruiting a further 85 officers by the end of 2020.

“By December next year force strength should stand at around 3,100 officers – the highest level since police and crime commissioners were introduced in 2012.

“Of the additional 85 officers there will be one for each of the 26 police sectors in Devon and Cornwall, with a remit to focus on connectivity and community, so East Devon residents will benefit directly.

“There will also be 30 more detectives, and the remaining 29 will go into response teams.”

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