Crime File: Presentations to keep students and youngsters safe on city's streets

Hundreds of Leeds sixth formers have been given expert advice on how to stay safe and steer clear of crime.

Neighbourhood Policing officers from North West Leeds Division organised a special engagement event at Leeds Civic Hall.

The event was attended by more than 400 students from schools and colleges across the area.

The packed programme included a range of presentations, stands, interactive exercises and discussions covering a broad range of topics relevant to young people.

Experts from West Yorkshire Police and from partner agencies, including Safer Leeds, West Yorkshire Fire & Rescue Service, and road safety charity Brake, gave informative presentations.

Topics covered in the presentations included knife crime, weapons awareness, drugs and alcohol, one-punch manslaughter, drink-spiking, mobile-phone safety, fire awareness, road safety and the consequences of dangerous driving, and terrorism.

Inspector Mark Bownass, of the West Inner Neighbourhood Policing Team, said: "The event was an excellent opportunity for the police and partner agencies to give a large cross section of the city's young people a lot of valuable advice that will hopefully help them keep safe as they make their way in the world.

"We hope that by investing in our young people in this way they will develop into responsible adults who can live life to the full without putting themselves or their friends at risk of the potential pitfalls young people can face."

Students involved in the event came from Benton Park School, Leeds West Academy, Ralph Thoresby School, Crawshaw School, Leeds City College, Priesthorpe School, Leeds College of Building, and Guiseley School.

The Lord Mayor of Leeds, Coun James McKenna, supported the event by providing the venue free of charge and free buses were laid on by transport body Metro and bus firm First to take students to and from the venue.

New inspector urges residents to help cops

ROTHWELL'S new Neighbourhood Policing Team inspector is urging residents to work with police to fight crime and anti-social behaviour.

Yvette Hammill took up her post as Inspector this week, replacing Sue Jenkinson who has been promoted to Chief Inspector.

Insp Hammill said: "Crime and anti-social behaviour have both reduced greatly over the last few years, and I'm keen to keep this up.

"The best way we can do this is by building even better opportunities for residents to contact the Neighbourhood Policing Team. By working together we can have a greater impact in tackling the issues that matter most to you, and I would encourage anyone who wants to speak to an officer to get in touch directly as soon as possible."

She added: "I am incredibly proud to be serving the local neighbourhoods and communities. I aim to put my strong knowledge of the area and its residents to good use by getting to the heart of any issues immediately to improve residents' quality of life."

Inspector Hammill was posted to Rothwell after serving as an inspector at the City and Holbeck Division. She has previously served as an Acting inspector at Leeds city centre's Neighbourhood Policing Team and as a sergeant at the Morley Neighbourhood Policing Team.

For more information on your neighbourhood policing team, visit www.wypnpt.org and follow the links.

Key role for top officer

A TOP cop with a proven track record of slashing violent crime has taken over a key role with Wakefield Police.

Superintendent Pat Casserly is the new of Head of Neighbourhood Policing Teams and Partnerships at Wakefield District Division.

He replaces Ingrid Lee who has been promoted to Chief Superintendent.

Supt Casserly, 47, spent most of his career with South Yorkshire Police where he led a street crime initiative which reduced robberies in Sheffield by 67 per cent.

He said: "I am delighted about this posting to Wakefield District Division where I have the opportunity to consolidate my previous operational experience and engagement with partnerships who are motivated to make Wakefield a safer place to live and work."

Hunt launched for Headingley train vandals

VANDALS who daubed two moving train carriages with graffiti at Headingley station are being hunted by British Transport Police.

They struck as the train was pulling in to the station just after 7.30pm on Friday, December 30.

Officers have drawn a blank after speaking to witnesses and viewing CCTV footage.

Sgt Peter Shaw said: "As the Northern Rail train pulled into the station, a group of youths were seen to jump down on to the line. As the train was stationary, they spray painted a six-foot 'OOK' tag amongst others across the length of the two carriages.

"We are particularly interested to speak to those who may have some information about this incident, as the 'OOK' tag has appeared on several trains in the region including Hull, Sheffield and Knottingley."

Sgt Shaw added: "The vandal or vandals appear to have spent a considerable amount of time perfecting their graffiti tag, so we are hoping that someone may have witnessed them in the act."

Call British Transport Police on 0800 405040, quoting reference B3/NEA of 21/01/2011.

Cabbie is injured in knifepoint robbery

A TAXI driver was injured during a knifepoint robbery in Leeds on Saturday night.

The driver's ordeal began after he had pulled up to drop off passengers.

Police say he had stopped his taxi on Noster Place, Beeston, just before 10pm to drop off his fare.

After pulling up, he was held in his seat by one of his three passengers.

A second passenger threatened the driver with what is thought to have been a knife.

He took the takings and mobile phone before getting out of the car and running off down a nearby ginnel.

The driver suffered minor injuries in the incident.

All three passengers are described as white.

The passenger who took the takings and phone is described as between 18 to 22 years old and around 5ft 9in to 5 ft 10in tall. He was wearing a black baseball cap, black tracksuit bottoms and a black top.

The second passenger is described as 18 to 22 years old, around 5ft 9in tall and chubby, with short shaven hair.

He was wearing a black tracksuit top and bottoms.

The third passenger is described as around 16 to 18 years old, around 5ft 3in to 5ft 4in tall, and was wearing black clothing.

Any witnesses, or anyone with information about the incident, is asked to contact City and Holbeck CID via 0845 6060606.