Community Council Report

By bellmannews / April 10, 2023

By Police Scotland

This report covers progress we have made in dealing with your priorities for the Kincardine and Mearns Community Council area for the period March 2023.

The report aims to highlight emerging issues in your area, provide crime prevention advice and guidance to Community Council members and the residents you represent.  Our focus is to reduce crime and disorder, help create safer communities and respond effectively to local concerns.

This will be a new format and happy for feedback.

In this new report I will focus on Policing Station ‘areas’ as historically these stations would covers the following areas.

Portlethen Police Station – Portlethen and surrounding areas including Drumoak and Durris. I will specify this as Portlethen.

Stonehaven Police Station – Stonehaven, Newtonhill and surrounding areas. I will specify this as Stonehaven.

Laurencekirk Police Station – Laurencekirk and surrounding areas including Fettercairn, Edzell woods, Auchenblae and Garvock. I will specify this as Laurencekirk.

The A92 towns (Catterline – St Cyrus) along the coastal Road are covered between Stonehaven and Laurencekirk but I will specify them as Coastal Road.

Community Policing Priorities

Antisocial behaviour, Violence and Disorder:

AreaAnti-SocialYouth Disorder
Portlethen25
Stonehaven13
Laurencekirk30
Coastal Road51

Acquisitive Crime:

AreaTheftsShopliftingsTheft of motorvehicle
Portlethen020
Stonehaven241
Laurencekirk500
Coastal Road100

Road Safety & road crime:

AreaDrink/Drug DrivingDangerousCareless Driving
Portlethen010
Stonehaven210
Laurencekirk000
Coastal Road000

Community Engagement & Reassurance:

This month I wish to make focus on Doorstep crime which affects all members of the community and advice on how to spot it. This summary gives good advice and is directly from Police Scotland website (Advice & Information – Police Scotland).

 It may not only be useful to you but also your family, friends and neighbours.

What is doorstep crime?

From bogus callers to rogue traders, doorstep criminals are cunning, creative, and convincing.

Anyone can be fooled as these people are professional con artists. The over 60s are targeted the most.

What types of doorstep criminals are there?

There are two main types:

Bogus callers try to get into your home or get personal details by pretending to be someone they’re not.

This can include council staff, charity collectors, meter readers and police officers. In reality, they are criminals trying to steal money and valuables.

Rogue traders usually cold-call. They claim to be workers offering services, make repairs or carry out work on your property. In reality they charge inflated prices for shoddy or work that isn’t needed.

We do not recommend dealing with cold-callers.

 How can I spot a rogue trader?

They tell you the work needs to be done immediately.

They will ask to be paid there and then. They may offer to go to the bank with you if you don’t have the cash at hand.

How can I protect myself from doorstep crime?

Here are some tips to follow to protect yourself.

  • Be on guard if someone turns up unexpectedly
  • Keep front and back doors locked
  • Use the door viewer or nearby window when answering the door
  • Fit a door chain or bar – use it and keep it on when talking to callers at the door
  • If you’re not sure, don’t answer the door
  • Don’t feel embarrassed – genuine callers expect you to be careful
  • Only let callers in if they have an appointment – confirm they are genuine
  • Always ask for identification badges, but don’t rely on them
  • Identity cards can be faked – phone the company to verify their identity
  • Some companies offer a password system – ask if this can be used
  • If you have a password with a company make sure the caller uses it
  • Never let people persuade you to let them into your home – they may not be genuine.
  • If someone is persistent, ask them to call at another time and get a friend or family member to be with you
  • Never agree to pay for goods or give money to strangers who arrive at your door
  • Don’t keep large amounts of money in your home
  • Remember, it’s your home, there’s no reason why anyone should ever enter your home against your wishes
  • If you’re not sure, don’t answer the door.

 What else can I do to stop being defrauded by a rogue trader?

Trading Standards advice is:

  • Don’t feel pressurised into agreeing to immediate work or buying a product or service
  • Don’t agree to buy from the first person who calls
  • Don’t pay cash up front. Don’t offer to go and get money
  • Shop around if you decide you need work done
  • Ask what your cancellation rights are
  • Report them.

What action should I take if someone visits me and I think they’re a doorstep criminal?

Here are some tips if you think someone is a doorstep criminal.

Keep the caller out of your house. Ask them to leave and call the police immediately on 101.

You might also want to try to alert a family member or attract a neighbour’s attention. You should always contact the police first by dialling 101.

The police would much rather attend a false alarm than have someone fall victim to a doorstep criminal.

If the person refuses to leave your door, or you feel threatened or scared – call 999 and ask for the police.

Note down their description and the description of any vehicle they’re using, including make, model, colour and registration number.

How can I protect my family, friend and neighbours?

Discuss the advice on this page with family, friends or neighbours who are older or vulnerable.

There are also other things you can do to help protect them. Everyone has a part to play to keep the community safe.

  • Keep an eye out for strange vans in your neighbour’s driveway
  • Make sure your relatives are not regularly taking large amounts of cash out of the bank
  • Make arrangements to ensure your relative’s house looks well maintained
  • Make it less obvious that an older person lives alone
  • Doorstep criminals will often target the same victim more than once. Be alert if someone has been a victim before
  • Police Scotland has a ‘Nominated Neighbour Scheme’ which can assist those who prefer not to answer the door to those they don’t know (read our Nominated Neighbour information)
  • Report any suspicious activity in your community immediately to Police Scotland on 101 or to your local authority Trading Standards
  • For more information on doorstep crime or assistance regarding home security contact your local Community Policing Team on 101.

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