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Crime: 11 April 2014


Crime continues to fall across Windsor and Maidenhead according to the latest crime figures.

The local police area has seen a nine per cent reduction in crime this year – 1 April 2013 to 31 March 2014 - compared to the same period last year, resulting in over 800 fewer victims (9,000 to 8,164).

There have been some significant reductions in various categories of the serious acquisitive crimes which matter most to the public.

Burglary dwelling has fallen by 33 per cent, from 641 offences last year to 428 this year resulting in 213 fewer burglaries. Burglary non-dwelling, which includes sheds and other out buildings, has fallen by 9 per cent, from 915 to 837 offences.

Auto-crime has also fallen across Windsor and Maidenhead with 61 fewer thefts from vehicles (1,016 to 955) and a 21 per cent drop in theft of vehicles with 29 fewer thefts of vehicles (136 to 107).

There is also good news in relation to violence against the person which has fallen by two per cent – 1,227 offences down to 1,204; theft from person down 32 percent with 80 fewer offences recorded from 251 to 171 crimes; domestic abuse incidents (recorded crime) down two incidents (509 to 507); shoplifting down 7 per cent from 666 to 620 offences; and incidents of arson and criminal damage down 3 per cent with 35 fewer offences (1,119 to 1,084).

Supt Kate Ford, local police commander for Windsor and Maidenhead, said: “These encouraging figures demonstrate the commitment of police, partners and the community working to achieve a common aim of making the Royal Borough a safer place to be.

“However, there is no room for complacency and it means we must work even harder in this coming year to improve upon these positive outcomes.

“Areas for focus will continue to be working together to tackle violence within the night time economy, domestic abuse and offender management to drive down acquisitive crime even further.

“Crucial to the on-going success is intelligence. This includes not only intelligence gained by my staff during the course of their duties but also partner and community intelligence. It may just be the missing piece of the jigsaw that enables the police to take positive action against those who would commit crime in our area. You can always on pass information via our 101 number or Crimestoppers anonymously.

“In areas where we have unfortunately experienced some increases, such as robbery and sexual offences, I am committed to reviewing our strategies and practices to ensure we get the greatest results, addressing any areas of improvement.”

Cllr Carwyn Cox, Lead Member for Community Safety said “Overall this is an excellent result for our residents with crimes falling significantly for most crime types.  I am particularly happy that there have been 800 fewer victims of crime in the borough.  This result is particularly noteworthy as a 16% reduction in all crime was achieved in the previous financial year.  I congratulate Thames Valley Police and the borough’s Community Wardens along with other members of the Community Safety Partnership who have all played their part in this success. “
Anthony Stansfeld, Police and Crime Commissioner for Thames Valley, said: “I am delighted that Windsor and Maidenhead have seen a drop in overall crime this year and I would like to take the opportunity to thank all officers, staff and volunteers for their hard work and dedication.
“As one of my key priorities I am particularly pleased to see another significant drop in domestic burglary.
“This drop in crime has been achieved despite considerable budget reductions force wide and demonstrates how well Thames Valley Police are using their resources, including the new technology available to them.”

To view a short video clip from Supt KateFord, CLICK HERE
NEXT a link to a web article advising us all to change our online passwords, due to a fault in certain online encryption programmes.  This is a useful article sent into me by Liz:
Dear Jeff
You may already have had information about the Heart Bleed bug, which is affecting a large number of the world's servers including Amazon, Google, Yahoo mail and the BBC.  The big companies have probably updated their systems by now, so people can change their passwords.  It does not affect all servers:
I have just discovered, our ‘reseller server’ uses one of the operating systems affected.  I have been given a load of gobbledigook that I need to update.  What a nightmare!!!
As the article says, the fault has been around for two years, so perhaps no-one found it till now.
Please follow the link and read the article.  There are brilliant notes about what passwords to choose and how scammers find and source simple passwords, if you use them !  Many thanks Liz.
Liz is one of our members, who is always sending me useful information to protect other residents.  That is what NHW is all about – protecting each other - and passing on useful pieces of advice.  Many years ago when it was first set up it was just about security, locks and bolts.  With advances in IT – we can do so much more !
Next another Courier Fraud
That brings me to a sad fact – we had another Courier Fraud on Wednesday !  I had hoped everyone in the Borough was now aware and we would not get another case.  Fortunately, a friend arrived just in the nick of time, pointed out it was a scam, banks were informed and no money taken.
9/4  Wednesday  2 p.m. / 9 p.m.  Ruddlesway, Dedworth, Windsor.  The aggrieved received a phone call from a ‘Police Officer’ at Hammersmith Police Station.  He said they had arrested 3 men.  One of the men, had removed money from the aggrieved’s bank account.
The police would need the bank cards, as evidence in court.  He would come to her home later that day, to collect them.  He then asked for all the card details including the PIN number, which he was given.
Later that day he made a second follow up call, saying that due to work commitments, he would not be able to collect the card.
A courier did arrive and the card was handed over.  Later a friend popped in and whilst discussing the incident it became clear it was a scam and the bank and police were called.
I note from this case, a slight change in the standard M.O., which may be a really important indicator of things to come.  There was no mention of ‘call the police / bank immediately to cancel your cards’, while the line was held open and you – in fact- spoke to a colleague of the scammer.
I hope this is not simply a new variation, now that this part of the scam is no longer possible.  I hope, they do not just omit that part, but continue to operate.
We cannot therefore sit back on our laurels.
We may not have heard the end of this one !
NEXT a follow up on my mention of ‘jammers’ being used in RBWM.  Since I mentioned them, I have received reports of shifting black-spots right across the Borough:
Hi Jeff,
It appears that our jammers are alive and well in Old Windsor. It happened three times in 24hrs to my car, but luckily, since we were first warned about this, I have always been extra careful, and never leave the car without double checking.
Thanks to your alerts.
NEXT an admission from Yvonne – which is an example to us all.  It is so easy to be caught off guard, particularly if we are busy.  We know what we should do, but it can happen to any of us !
Dear Jeff,
After all your warnings, I am sorry, but I fell for a phone call and gave out personal information over the phone, to a complete stranger !
After reading your messages, I have been so careful.
I am Chair of a small local charity, called Friends of Bethany UK.  We support 70 children in Uganda who without us would have no hope.  We feed and educate them, which gives them a future, because without education, they would not be able to work in their future lives.
Someone rang me.  He gave his name and explained that he acted for a charity, offering free office accommodation to other charities in the area.
He asked if we had an office and I explained that we were a small charity and I worked from home.
He explained that Landlords with empty offices, offered them to his charity, for other charities to use; rather than leaving their buildings empty. There would be no charge to us.
I said “Surely there would be a charge for telephone and electricity” ?  He said ‘Yes, if it is not used excessively, there would be no charge’.
He asked for my email and I gave it.
He said he would be in touch in a few days, but yesterday my computer started playing up.
I know you said that If the offer seems too good to be true, it probably isn’t, but for me working in charity, we have had other charities who have supported us in other ways and they have been genuine.
I was taken by surprise and did not ask the right questions !
I am sorry.

Mayor invites families to join in 21-gun salute celebration for Queen’s birthday


The Royal Borough’s 21-gun salute to mark Her Majesty The Queen’s birthday will be held on Saturday 19 April and the Mayor, Cllr Andrew Jenner, is urging families to join in the celebrations.
With the Queen’s 88th birthday falling on a Monday (21 April), the borough’s annual tribute will be held on the preceding Saturday to enable as many families as possible to come along to the Long Walk near Windsor Castle to add their good wishes on this special occasion.
Cllr Jenner said: “This is a traditional and fitting way to wish Her Majesty ‘happy birthday’ – and there is an opportunity for children to fire one of the cannons, under supervision.
“Each year this special event attracts many visitors and I am very much looking forward to welcoming the many spectators. With the salute being at the weekend I hope it will be a family day out, especially if we have lovely weather.
“Our cannons are small but mighty and children really enjoy them, particularly if they are the lucky ones who get to fire one.
“I issue a warm invitation to everyone to join in the celebration and look forward to welcoming them to the Long Walk on 19 April – not only for the cannon firing but also to sing the National Anthem!”
The salute will take place near the Brook Street entrance to the Long Walk with experienced borough bombardier John Matthews in charge of proceedings. The first cannon will be fired on the stroke of 12noon.
Hi Jeff,
I have been meaning to write to you, about house alarms.
We recently had a tradesman (very well known to us) in the house, who inadvertently, set off the alarm.  He was there legitimately, but the house alarm went off 3 times, for three minutes each time.   He therefore expected the house to be visited by the police (our alarm is not directly connected to the police) at any moment.
Despite being in a Neighbourhood Watch area, not one of our neighbours made a call to 101 or 999, despite an unknown van parked in our front garden !
Can you remind all concerned that alarms can only deter the intruder.  The whole reason for being in a Watch area, is so that neighbours look out for each other and alert the necessary authorities if anything suspicious or untoward happens.
Would appreciate a timely reminder to everyone in Neighbourhood Watch.
Keep up the good work !
Best Regards
Thanks Ray for bringing this up.  There will be new members out there who are not aware of the police policy re responding to sounding, or in fact monitored alarms.
The police will only attend an alarm activation, if it is a crime in progress.  For it to reach that status, there must be two pieces, of corroborative evidence:
  1.  An alarm is sounding
  2. Someone is in the property and the offence is occurring now – it is a crime in progress
The secondary piece of evidence is vital, to get police attendance.  It could be.....someone heard a noise in the property...or...saw a shadow at the window.....It is down to the perception of the caller.
If there are the required 2 pieces of corroborative evidence, it will guarantee a police response.  Who knows, by the time the police attend, whoever was inside the property, could have made their escape and no longer be there.
It is the same for monitored alarms.  If an external sensor is triggered, the monitoring company, will not call the police, until a secondary piece of evidence happens – an internal sensor is triggered.  They then make the call.
This is all guidance and tempered by whether or not we are busy.  If we have no more urgent cases to deal with and we get a call to say an alarm is sounding, generally we will attend, but there is no guarantee.
As you say though – in the case of street sounding alarms, you do rely on your neighbours / passers-by to do the right thing and call the police.
Your Neighbourhood Page on TVP's Website - Click Here
9/4  Wednesday 10.30 p.m.  Ray Mill Road East.  The owner of a car saw a man enter their car and sit down inside.  When challenged he immediately ran off, climbed over a gate into a nearby garden.  The police were called, attended immediately and carried out an area search and containment.  They located a man matching the description given and he was arrested.  Loose change and chewing gum had been stolen.
Your Neighbourhood Page on TVP's Website - Click Here
9/4 – 10/4  Wednesday 8.30 p.m. / Thursday 9 a.m.  Queensway, Furze Platt.  Car badly keyed.
10/4  Thursday 1 a.m. / 8 a.m.  Mallow Park, Furze Platt.  Wing mirror stolen from a black Ford SMAX.
Your Neighbourhood Page on TVP's Website - Click Here
10/4  Thursday 9.25 p.m. – 10.25 p.m.  Grenfell Road.  Car damaged and keyed, wing mirrors also damaged.  When you park up can you please fold in your wing mirrors it makes them less of a target and temptation ?
6/4 – 9/4  Sunday / Wednesday  Boyn Hill Close.  Garage break.  Lock removed and bike stolen.  The bike was secured in the garage with a bike lock – which was left behind.  A carbon grey, Specialised Rockhopper bike. 
Dear Jeff
I have received a scam email pretending to come from HM Revenue & Customs and informing me of a tax rebate.
There is, of course, a ‘click connection’ which, I imagine, is how the scammer gets access to the targeted bank account or pc.
The logos are very realistic but the Inland Revenue never contacts anyone by email, nor do they address people as ‘dear applicant’.
This is the 2nd time in the last couple of months that I’ve received this email – you might want to add a warning to your newsletter.
Best wishes
It is that time of year – the end of the financial year - when rebates, new tax codes come into effect and other financial matters are agreed.
It is a time that you may expect to receive an email from the Inland Revenue, so it may slip under the radar of your awareness and you might just click without thinking.  As always – Dear customer / sir / madam / householder with a promise of something, a threat / deadline and open the attachment to find out more means........... BIN IT.
Hi Jeff,
Here is a strange one.
I have received 2 separate copies of the following email today; apparently from 2 trusted friends.  I have since spoken with both of them.
It is of course a scam.
If you click where requested, it takes you into a window asking you to enter your email address and password!!

Worth a mention in your mail.

Continue the good work!

Regards, John
I asked john if it was addressed to him personally.
No Jeff, not personally.
The subject line reads "Newsletter (#name of sender)"
John did exactly the right thing – check with the sender – if they are names you recognise – then BIN IT !

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