The recent Poole Harbour security event was supported by Poole Harbour Commissioners (Port Control), Dorset Marine Police, Poole Harbour Watch, Marine Volunteer Service, RNLI and SelectaDNA.
At the meeting we learnt that the Dorset Marine Policing team comprises PC Roan Doyle and PCSO Dave Brown. PC Doyle explained that though the team is small in number and doesn’t have a dedicated craft they can call upon many other agencies and resources, including shore-based police, Border Force, Coastguard and in some cases request helicopter, drone or CCTV support.
What became clear is that policing nowadays has changed considerably and is much more intelligence-lead than previously possible. PC Doyle described how he measures his success, not by how many criminals he catches, but rather by how much crime he prevents through the measures that he has taken. He emphasised that the public and boat-owners should not only report crimes that have occurred but also any suspicious activity or persons that look out of place. This could mean nothing to us but may be the vital part of a jigsaw which helps to bring about a prosecution.
Prevention is clearly very important and we learnt that all police forces support and have adopted SelectaDNA technology to mark their equipment and when it is used it tends to deter criminals from even attempting to commit a theft once they know the property is so marked. The police carry UV torches so that they can detect SelectDNA markings on recovered stolen property.
PC Roan confirmed that if you see a crime in progress it is perfectly acceptable to report it by calling 999. If the crime has happened and is not an emergency you are still requested to report it by calling 101 or emailing email@example.com. Remember, if you don’t report it, the police cannot do anything about it!