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Cut in crime is top of agenda for new Devon and Cornwall police commissioner Tony Hogg

By Western Morning News  |  Posted: November 19, 2012

Devon and Cornwall police commissioner Tony Hogg

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Devon and Cornwall's new police and crime commissioner Tony Hogg pledged yesterday to put cutting crime at the top of his priorities following his comprehensive election victory.

The landmark election saw Conservative Mr Hogg sweep into power with a total of 69,419 votes following a run-off with independent Brian Greenslade who ended with 37,243.

The 63-year-old former commander of RNAS Culdrose, in West Cornwall, said he was "honoured" to have been elected to the powerful new position and pledged to "get on with business and work hard".

He stressed that "cutting crime" was the number one priority and pledged to press for the appointment of up to 500 more special constables to help in the battle. He said the "experiences of victims should guide the thoughts" of commissioner. "I will be listening," he added.

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"For the first time residents can hold someone directly to account at the ballot box for the way in which their community is policed.

"Whatever your views on the election or turnout, I am committed to serving everyone in Devon, Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly.

"This is an exciting opportunity for everyone to get behind this new role, to get involved to help shape future priorities an d work together to make a real difference.

"I'm here to get on with business and work hard. People will expect me to work closely with the chief constable to get things done and that's exactly what I plan to do by helping people feel more connected and engaged with the police and crime plan.

"People want value for money while maintaining safety and I will do everything within the powers I have been given to ensure the resources are there to do the job and meet priorities

Mr Hogg admitted that he would have "wished for a larger turnout". Just 15.14% cast their vote last Thursday – a record low in peacetime. "I don't feel people had enough information in time about the role," he said.

Mr Hogg, who served in both the Falklands conflict and first Gulf War, said he faced a busy first "100 days in office".

He assumes power on Thursday when the police authority, made up of local councillors and independent members, formally ceases to exist. He will set a budget and will also have to appoint a permanent chief constable and publish a "crime and police plan" by March 2013.

"There is a difficult road ahead and some tough decisions will have to be made," he said. "These are challenging times and I want to support the police through them. We all want effective and efficient policing across Devon and Cornwall and we must have police patrolling our streets."

Chief Constable Shaun Sawyer, who was appointed on a temporary basis following the departure of Stephen Otter in March, congratulated Mr Hogg.

"I believe that we both share the same long-term aspirations of reducing crime, enhancing the safety and well-being of the public and their quality of life," Mr Sawyer said. "I will fully support Tony in his role."

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  • ewan55  |  November 20 2012, 12:09AM

    At last an Action man in charge, have you seen his CV.... Lets hope he kicks some a**e. promises to be much better than those councillors (political) who ran the Police Authority along with their high expenses and allowances... Don't forget they voted themselves a 25% increase in the last year. The jury's out on this new role, but you never know it may work ??

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  • twain1  |  November 19 2012, 11:27PM

    IMO, it would be a start to see these ''open prisons'' put in rural locations instead of town centres, as they bring drug trafficking and other criminal behaviour with them. But is that too simplistic?

  • jay_guz  |  November 19 2012, 11:21PM

    Am I missing something???? As I understand police are not allowed to be members of any political party, I assume it is to do with being impartial regardless of political belief. Now we have a police force which is basically ran by a political party?

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  • charliebravo  |  November 19 2012, 10:59PM

    I don't want to see more coppers walking around - what are the chances of them seeing a crime or even being withing 10 minutes walk of a crime. I want to see mobile Police officers. I want to see a civilian operating a ANPR camera on the side of the road with a bobby down the road ready to stop anybody who comes up as wanted or with no insurance or tax or MoT. I don't want to see highly paid police officers doing clerical work because all the low-paid admin staff have been laid off to protect police numbers. It's a question of cost effective policing. Privatisation is not the end of the police service - it could mean that vehicle maintenance, IT support, personnel functions could all be undertaken by others - not necessarily those nasty profit-making conservatives but maybe by a local council or a not-for-profit enterprise on a sub-contracting basis. The PCC shouldn't be telling the Chief Constable what to do - he should be setting key performance indicators and leaving up to the officers to decide how to achieve the required results. I've lived in Torpoint for two years and had three dealings with Devon and Cornwall's finest. On no occasion did they cover themselves with glory - on each occasion they were let down by middle management and policy decisions from on high - that and their pathetic 101 service. So Mr Hogg has lots to do and the benefit of my advice as to how to set about doing it!

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  • 147ref  |  November 19 2012, 9:56PM

    more specials, oh no, powerless to do much, we want police that to be seen and cut down on their red tape paperwork

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  • eu_blues  |  November 19 2012, 7:16PM

    I bet Mr. Lavery is happy. At least one good thing has come out of this. Its another step towards the regionalisation of Devon & Cornwall. I bet the EU is over the moon about all these commissioners being elected in.

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  • penguinsback  |  November 19 2012, 5:13PM

    have to laugh at this......hes getting publicity for basically stating his priority is to do his job, hes a police commissioner of course cutting crime should be his top priority! should it be anything else?

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  • Banned-alot  |  November 19 2012, 4:46PM

    What ever happened to Steven Otter? I must have been away when he left us all..

  • CharlieDodd  |  November 19 2012, 3:46PM

    ..'he pledged to press for the appointment of up to 500 more special constables'.. Good for you mate, you could also press for the installation of CCTV to provide saturation coverage of the city including road accident blackspots. Nobody can argue with the 24/7 all-seeing eye of cameras..:)

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  • robocop1982  |  November 19 2012, 1:28PM

    YOU guys really are way to trusting.

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