Restoring confidence in the police, tackling domestic violence and working with the council and other service providers will be the main priorities of Croydon’s new top cop.
Chief Superintendent Andy Tarrant was appointed as new borough commander at the start of the month and in his first interview since taking up the position has outlined his main goals for Croydon.
Speaking alongside new council leader Councillor Tony Newman he spoke of increasing the work done with schools to fight youth-on-youth violence, in particular knife crime, while also potentially opening young people up to the idea of joining the police themselves.
He said: “There is a perception of crime, and of youth on youth crime.
“Our officers on the schools team are on a diversionary programme engaging with young people with offending. It would be right to say young people have a fear of crime at similar levels to that of the elderly and we need to address this."
Coun Newman added work to improve the reputation of the area and convince people they could come to the town centre particularly at night without fear, was a huge priority.
The pair also emphasised the fight against domestic violence was a key aim.
Chief Supt Tarrant said: “I want to commission analysis to look a the scale, issues and drivers behind domestic violence.
“This is not something police can deal with alone.
“We will be working with health services, social services, the family justice centre and the council.”
He also promised to be a visible presence in the borough, offering to attend public meetings, but also walk the streets to engage directly with the public to hear the concerns of people directly.
Pressed on specifics such as whether he would push for a police station in London Road, as recommended by the report commissioned following the August 2011 riots, Chief Supt Tarrant and Coun Newman said they were looking at the options, but it was unlikely a full station would be built on the road.
Chief Supt Tarrant said: “There is a challenge around the police estate at present, but we would look at any opportunities to increase the presence in London Road.”