Facilitator Zandra Ross speaks to the group at the community crime prevention workshop.

Crime prevention begins in Fort St. James

After two community meetings on crime prevention priorities and plans, first steps taken

 

A mail drop has been set up for crime tips and the wheels are in motion to organize both Block Watch and possibly Citizens on Patrol (C.O.P.).

Staff Sergeant Paul Thalhofer made the commitment to set up the tip drop box in the community and to begin the background research into setting up the Block Watch and C.O.P. at last week’s crime prevention workshop.

The second of two workshops, there were far fewer people than at the first meeting with only 18 in attendance, but breakout groups brainstormed on ways to approach the top three identified concerns from the first meeting: drugs and alcohol, loitering and property crime.

So a way to help make people more comfortable coming forward with information on crimes was addressed by the creation of a mail drop for tips.

Anyone in the community can drop information they have regarding a crime or criminal activity in a letter at the post office addressed to RCMP, and no postage is required, but the mail will be put in the RCMP mail box. Sgt. Thalhofer has already assigned a constable to be the intelligence coordinator who will go through the information provided and it will be followed up.

“At this point here, we’ll take anything we can get,” said Thalhofer.

He hopes the drop will provide people with a safe and comfortable way to provide information they know to RCMP.

He has also been in contact with the Crime Prevention Office in Prince George to find out what the next steps are for setting up Block Watch and getting a C.O.P. program back up and running.

There was one previously in the community, he said, but it has been inactive. There is some funding remaining set aside for the program and there is still some of the necessary equipment.

In addition, Thalhofer said he has requested some crime prevention kits for businesses in the community, in order to help deter some criminals.

For Moonlight Madness, RCMP have also already been working on a plan to have an RCMP presence in place to deter problems with drinking in public and similar issues for the family event.

Last week was the second of two workshops organized by the Nak’azdli Alternate Justice Centre in partnership with other community groups, including the RCMP, the municipality, the Nak’azdli Band, and the College of New Caledonia.

The workshops were facilitated by Zandra Ross, who will now compile a report of all the suggestions and ideas moving forward.

Keeping the community safe

With the assistance of the local Canada Post, a system is now in place for community members to supply information to the police with no risk to themselves or their families.

If you have the desire to do your part in keeping our community safe you can now supply                                                                                  information to the police in a manner that will not put you at risk. You can remain anonymous or provide contact information to our investigators for follow up .

Write the information/details down,

seal it in an envelope,

Write RCMP on the face of the envelope,

Drop the envelope in any local mail box, NO POSTAGE REQUIRED

The envelope will be delivered to the RCMP mail box

The information gathered will be used to formulate a response to those persons that are posing a risk to our community.

Information that is good for RCMP to know is:

People involved – physical descriptions, ages, gender,

Vehicle descriptions, license plates

What they are doing and when they are doing it

Example:   The same person in the same vehicle making drug runs to the city

The same person or residence selling consistently on pay days

People in possession of stolen property

Grow ops

 

There is no such thing as bad information everything is good for RCMP to know. They will sort out the information as it comes in.

Submit a tip using your cell phone

Call: 1-800-222-TIPS (8477). You remain anonymous. Criminals don’t.

Text: PGTIP and your message to CRIMES (274637)

If you see a crime in progress or, call 911 immediately.

Leave a tip online

If you have information about a crime you can now provide an anonymous tip online using our secure and encrypted web-tip form.

You will never be identified.

We don’t use call display.

We don’t want your name, phone number or email address … we only want your information.

You will never have to testify in court.

You could receive a cash reward of up to $2000 upon an arrest and charge.

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