Drug-fuelled crime has increased 2% between April-December 2018, compared to the previous 12 months according to Bournemouth Police.
Although this may be down to a variety of factors, Bournemouth Police believe they need more support from the public in order to reduce drug-fuelled crime.
Police Inspector Jon Wasey said: “It’s no good being vocal but not supporting investigations. We want people to help us.”
He continued: “People often don’t want to report crime. They need to report it online, by phone or via crime stoppers.”
Despite the slight increase in drug-fuelled crime in Springbourne, crime in general has reduced in the area, and statistics are similar to other areas in Bournemouth.
Police Inspector Jon Wasey said: “Springbourne is safer. It’s going to have drug-fuelled crime, it is not dissimilar to anywhere. There is a whole host of work going on to reduce it.”
Cllr David Kelsey, who represents the East Cliff and Springbourne ward believes that although reducing drug-fuelled crime will be a difficult task, the situation is not as bad as people think.
Cllr Kelsey said: “Trying to find out where its coming from and why its happening is an impossible job. All we can do is contain it.
He added: “Much of it is down to perception. A lot of things happen once or twice but because the same resident sees it, they think it’s happening all the time, when actually it isn’t.”
The development of county lines – a network set up by urban gangs in which they supply drugs across the country through dedicated mobile phone lines – may have caused this slight increase in drug-fuelled crime.
Cllr Kelsey said in reference to this development: “Drugs are so easily available. The police try their hardest and the residents get fed up of reporting it, so it just carries on”.
Springbourne and Boscombe run many drug-rehabilitation services and halfway houses (a project used to get vulnerable drug-users into safe accommodation) for users across Bournemouth and the surrounding areas.
Elaine Findlay, member of the Springbourne Area Forum believes that although the services they provide are beneficial for drug-users, the large amount of them in a small area does have some negative effects on Springbourne.
She said: “Where there are drug-rehabilitation centres, you have a captive audience for drug dealers. They know they are vulnerable and were addicts in the past.”
Mrs Findlay believes that this is making the area a more dangerous place.
She said: “I always exercise caution. There are certain areas I wont walk down alone in the dark.”
If you see or suspect drug use in your area, contact the Police on it’s non-emergency number – 101