A Christmas crime prevention campaign has been launched in Swindon Town Centre to tackle crime over the festive period.
Operation Dasher has been launched by the Swindon Town Centre Neighbourhood Policing Team (NPT).
Dasher is an operation dedicated to policing the town centre during the day – including late night shopping – during the busy Christmas period.
It focuses on the policing efforts as part of Wiltshire Police’s commitment to the Swindon Community Safety Partnership’s Christmas Safety Campaign.
During the Christmas period the NPT will deploy a number of crime prevention strategies that will include increased high visibility and covert patrols.
The campaign is being run in partnership with inSwindon, the town’s retailers, store security staff and licensed premises.
Central NPT Inspector Adrian Burt said: "Crime and anti-social behaviour during the day time remain relatively low.
"Our partners in the town; the retailers, store security staff, inSwindon and centre management firms have a shared commitment and responsibility to maintain this during the busy festive period when an increase in opportunistic crime can occur.
"Our aim is to ensure Swindon town centre is a safe and pleasant place to visit.
"The Day Safe network is a valuable resource for this and information sharing assists in both the prevention and detection of crime"
Town centre Community Beat Manager PC Paul Bezzant added: "The increased footfall in the town can see an increase in opportunistic crime.
"In conjunction with our partners, under Operation Dasher, we will robustly police those insistent on committing crime and anti-social behaviour in the town.
"We effectively use our offender management strategies to deal with those persistent offenders and there is a great team ethos among our partners in the town.
"The Day Safe network with our shared commitment gives the town an invaluable resource.
"There is a real team effort with more pairs of eyes looking out to curb crime and anti-social behaviour."
As part of the campaign, officers from the NPT will be available at The Parade (outside Debenhams) in the town centre between 10am and 2pm on Saturday 14 December 2013.
Officers will be present along with the Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service, Highways Agency, Trading Standards (including advice about loan sharks), Health Service & Samaritans where advice and crime prevention advice will be given.
Christmas Crime Prevention Tips:
Always keep home doors and windows locked, even when inside your property.
Make sure all Christmas presents are kept out of sight at home and never leave gifts in your car.
Plan all nights out carefully including a safe journey home and always tell someone where you are and when you expect to be home.
When out for the evening, never leave your drink unattended and know your limits.
When out shopping, always keep your purse or wallet, mobile phone and valuables out of sight.
Make sure you note all the serial numbers of electrical equipment – even those items you are giving away as gifts.