New top cop for Devon and Cornwall Shaun Sawyer favours community work
THE top cop in Devon and Cornwall is looking for innovative ways of tackling crime and anti-social behaviour.
Shaun Sawyer, who was confirmed as Chief Constable yesterday, told The Herald: "I am seriously thinking of innovative ideas for managing offenders, particularly low-level offenders.
"Anti-social behaviour can have a terrible impact and I don't want to under-estimate that, but we need to be innovative in how we deal with offenders."
Young offenders could be sent out to work alongside voluntary groups like the Street Pastors, he said. "This would not be as punishment but as education.
"I would want to say to them, go out and work with the people who manage people like you and see it through their eyes."
Earlier Mr Sawyer, who has been acting Chief Constable since last March, convinced members of the region's Police and Crime Panel that he was the right man for the job.
The panel, meeting in Plymouth, had the power to veto the choice of Tony Hogg, the elected Police and Crime Commissioner.
In the end all 20 members backed Mr Sawyer.
Mr Sawyer told members, who are drawn from across Devon, Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly, that the public saw issues like anti-social behaviour as important, but other work had to go on behind the scenes.
"We are not immune from terrorism and cyber-crime in the peninsula and I have to deal with it."
And he gave a signal that he supported keeping bobbies on the beat. Whether or not that is the best use of resources "it's what people want", Mr Sawyer said.
Mr Hogg said afterwards: "This gives Shaun Sawyer the mandate to take his plans forward and I look forward to working closely with him."