Crime in regional communities can be very different to what is seen in the city. Having worked as a police officer in remote communities I’ve seen firsthand the frustration and distress that rural crime can cause, especially to those on the land.
Stock and equipment theft, illegal hunting and trespass are serious offences and can have a devastating effect on farmers. In the bush, our Rural Crime Investigators, together with the rest of our police, are doing what they can to stamp out these crimes.
These dedicated officers are there to support rural communities. And going forward the focus of NSW Police on rural crime will only get stronger under our most recent reforms to the structure of the Police Force, with the introduction of a dedicated Deputy Commissioner for Regional NSW. This will ensure that the unique issues facing rural communities will be represented at the very highest levels within the Police Force.
Unfortunately, at the moment a lot of rural crime is not reported, with many victims believing that it’s too hard to prove or not serious enough to involve the police.
Last week I was joined by NSW Police to promote rural crime week, an important initiative to encourage reporting of rural crime. Any crime, whether big or small, should always be reported to police.
While it may not seem like much in isolation, every report has the potential to be the crucial piece of intelligence that police need to catch a criminal.