LETTER: Don’t just sit back, help cops fight crime

LETTER: Don’t just sit back, help cops fight crime

Oliver RCMP Sergeant Blaine Gervais talks to local resident Fiona Wood, while RCMP Superintendent Ted de Jager engages Mayor Ron Hovanes after the forum. (Lyonel Doherty photo)

Here is my summary of the community safety forum meeting held Tuesday, June 19.  

There was a very small attendance of citizens which was very disappointing.

We had some good open discussion that comes back to the fact that the RCMP only have so much coverage which is unfortunately true. They’re in the process of filling two positions, one of which I believe is an aboriginal liaison of sort. They are currently short staffed and stretched to the limit.  

There is an auxiliary RCMP program available for citizens to join. There is training available and three different tiers where the top two obtain Peace Officer status. Having auxiliaries in and around our town assisting the RCMP would be a great asset. Please consider this. You can contact our local detachment for more information on how to apply (250-498-3422). 

The Crime Watch/Speed Watch program is in action, but unfortunately their numbers are dwindling and most are over 70 so their stamina doesn’t allow them to be out during the hours we need them to be. 

We need fresh blood who are willing to volunteer even one, four-hour shift per month. Please consider volunteering. 

Speeding complaints can also be emailed with the time and area of concern. Please contact Ron Johnson at Olivercrimewatch@gmail.com for more information. 

Bylaw enforcement (Shilo Lyver and crew) are doing their part by trying to keep up on all the problem houses in town by constantly putting pressure on messy/problem properties, as well as encouraging citizens to utilize the Good Neighbour Bylaw. They have requested that there be as much documentation as possible with claims. 

 Did you know that you can send any tip to Crime Stoppers anonymously?  The number is 1-800-222-8477. I would recommend sending only non time sensitive tips into this number. You can also call the local RCMP non emergency line at (250) 498-3422. 

Just remember to use 911 for all emergencies. 

The biggest help we can give the RCMP is to report, report, report. Corporal Tarasoff told me that any information, no matter how big or small, can help lead to the arrests we are looking for. The RCMP are also working on having an email available for sending information.

Police also request logging pictures and serial numbers of your important items. They have such an inventory of stolen items and it’s hard to return it  without proper identification.

Please make sure we do our part in locking our stuff up to make it harder for the opportunists. 

There are definitely many flaws in our judicial system which reflects on how offenders are sentenced and released. All of these complaints can be forwarded to our local MLA and MP to be dealt with at the provincial level.   

Our local RCMP can only do so much. We need to come together as a community and help pick up the slack where we can and try to do our best to be proactive. 

The police are just as frustrated as we are and are equally as affected. Even Sgt. Gervais had his camper stolen right out of his driveway. Mayor Ron Hovanes has also fallen victim to theft from his property. It affects us all. 

Let’s do what we can and work together.

Nicole Kriesel, Oliver