Operation Scrooge launched today at Andover’s new community project, Breakers.
Local retailers were all invited along to the presentation, given by Sgt Glenn Curtis and PC Rachel Noble, who are part of Andover’s Safer Neighbourhood Team.
Operation Scrooge is in place to educate and enable local retailers in the town centre, and Retail parks, to protect their businesses against shoplifters over the Christmas period, a period that sees a spike in these kind of crimes. Andover’s Safer Neighbourhood Team has provided local retailers with a list of prolific and known local shoplifters to enable them to be even more vigilant. The message from Andover Police is that there is zero tolerance to any kind of shoplifting or pickpocketing offence, and perpetrators will be dealt with swiftly and firmly.
Local retailer, David Mellor, attended the launch and told Andover & Villages, “It is an excellent tool for local retailers. What we all need to do is communicate a lot more and tell each other if there is a known shoplifter in the town, so we can be aware. It is too late after it’s happened. We need to be on alert. Forewarned is forearmed.”
Leader of the Safer Neigbourhood Team, Sgt Glenn Curtis, said, “We don’t want to alarm Andover about levels of crime in the town centre and retail parks, but it’s about making sure retailers are more aware, more educated about where they put their stock on display, how they hire staff and how they ensure security is at the best it can be.
“Andover Police will be visiting all retailers to give them a poster to display in their windows and an advice pack, so that any opportunistic or well-known shoplifters are fully aware that Andover will not tolerate these kind of criminal offences.”
During December, there will be at least one beat officer on patrol in the town centre as well as operations involving plain clothed police.