It is a great privilege for me to have taken over as Local Area Commander for South East Edinburgh from Chief Inspector Helen Harrison, who has been promoted to a new role in Lothians and Scottish Borders Division. Helen played a vital role in overseeing our Operation Summer City and Operation Winter City policing campaigns, during the Edinburgh International Festival and Edinburgh’s Christmas and Hogmanay celebrations.
I would also like to take this opportunity to thank two of our Community Policing Team, Inspector Graeme Nisbet and Sergeant Dave Cuthbert, who have worked tirelessly to support the communities of south Edinburgh over a number of years. Dave is moving on to a specialist post and Graeme is off to enjoy a well-earned retirement. I am sure the communities they served will join me in acknowledging their efforts and wish them well.
Inspector Norman Towler and Sergeant Barry Mercer will be following in their footsteps, and both bring a wealth of community policing experience from across the city.
It is my intention to continue the excellent work that has gone before us and build on the successful working relationships we have with our key partners to make this year’s campaigns as much of a success as previous years.
During my time as a police officer, I have served in a number of uniformed roles within Community and Response policing. Much of this was based within the city centre so I am fully aware of the demands that the South East area brings.
Matters relating to our night-time economy and consumption of alcohol have been prevalent throughout my service and were very much my focus when I was the Inspector responsible for the area. I will continue to focus on these issues through our weekly Operation Nightguard deployments. Those on Nightguard duties are committed to engaging with licensed premises, our partners, and patrons to deter over-consumption of alcohol and prevent those enjoying a night out from getting involved in, or falling victim to, criminal activity.
I would like to take this opportunity to extend my thanks to those who responded to our media appeal following the despicable robbery of an elderly lady outside Gilmerton library at the start of the month.
I would like to commend the work of our funded Ward Officers and CID colleagues who worked together tirelessly to identify those responsible within days. Incidents such these, no matter how rare, will simply not be tolerated and I will invest significant resources to deter and disrupt those intent on causing harm. Additional Community Policing and specialist officers have been deployed in the area and we are working closely with our partners develop a full programme of work.
A continued priority here in the South East, as well as other areas of the city is tackling housebreaking. This is an issue that affects all communities and something we take incredibly seriously. Edinburgh has a dedicated housebreaking unit tasked with investigating crimes of this nature and bringing offenders to justice. We also work closely with second-hand retailers to return stolen property to its rightful owners.
Over the past couple of years, we have seen housebreaking figures fall but we are not complacent and are committed to reducing incidents further. Within the South East locality specifically we have dedicated additional resources under the banner of Operation Rhetorical to tackle theft in general and this continued focus has led to a reduction in thefts from motor vehicles across the area.
Chief Inspector Davie Robertson is the new Local Area Commander for South East Edinburgh.