More on those scammers 

Hello from our Police hub.

This week I had the pleasure of joining Eileen and Kathy from Cambridge Neighbourhood Support and Terry Johnston of Secranet  to meet with Tamahere locals around crime prevention. I appreciated the opportunity and look forward to more local crime prevention meetings in the near future.

I have mentioned scammers in the past, but it appears that they are the gift that keeps on giving…or receiving in the case of Steam and iTunes cards. Retailers are again telling me that our elderly are being targeted and convinced to purchase credit on these gift cards, adding up to several hundred dollars over a short space of time. Where this happens, it is highly likely they are being conned by a scammer. Knowledge is our best defence in these situations.

Please, have discussions with your elderly family members and neighbours to make them aware. Any unsolicited approaches, especially online (for example via apps such as Whatsapp) that lead to requests for money transfers or gift card purchases are to be ignored or treated with a high level of caution. Scammers also contact us via text and phone calls.  I have myself been the recipient of several unsolicited international calls to my mobile phone. These are also scam based. The best action is to not answer the call and to immediately block the number from your phone each time a new number comes in.

Graffiti is the other hot topic of the moment, as we all have seen an increase in this around town. Someone deliberately spray painting or writing on another person’s property is wilful damage.  If tagging is located on your private property, please report it to 105 along with a photo of the tag, prior to removing it. Taggers will typically have their own dedicated tag name which they use, and you will frequently see it drawn on their personal belongings and spaces. Graffiti is one of those entry level crimes that can lead on to further offending. Tagging creates visual annoyance and can negatively affect a community’s sense of safety.

Graffiti, when left, is inherently self-perpetuating, as a second tagger may want to overwrite the first tag or simply see the presence of one tag as justification to graffiti the same location. If you have any information as to an individual’s use of a specific tag, let us know. Report it to 105.police.govt.nz or anonymously to Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.   If you see offenders tagging in front of you, call 111 immediately.

One final note, a query has been raised around what to do if you are crossing the high level bridge in Cambridge and a police car is on urgent duty driving with lights and sirens behind you. It is not practical, nor expected that you will try to stop or pull over in someway to let a Police car pass on the bridge itself. It is however required that you pull over to let the police car pass your car,  as soon as safely possible once you are on the roadway at the other side.

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