Nine extra police

By Jackson Russell – 

The Macedon Ranges will see an increased police presence in the area over the next 12 months, with nine additional officers allocated to the police service area.

The nine make up part of the rollout of 788 officers across the state, 51 of which have been allocated to the Bendigo division, by April 2021.

Fourteen members of the 51 will be deployed to shared divisional resources including highway patrol, criminal investigation units, sexual offences and child abuse teams, crime scene services and intelligence units.

Training at the police academy is already underway with the new officers to be gradually rolled out to police stations and specialist areas.

Macedon Ranges Police Service Area Inspector Chris Large said a decision as to where the new officers would be stationed was yet to be made.

“No timeframe for their arrival but it will be in the next 12 months or so,” he said.

“The reality is it doesn’t matter which station they’re posted at, they’ll all respond to jobs in that area.

“We’ll allocate them where we need them most in accordance with our staff allocation model.

“We’re really pleased the members are coming and we’re hopeful the community will see an increased police presence on the road and in our police stations as well.”

Deputy Commissioner Rick Nugent said more than 350 of the 788 new positions would be allocated to rural frontline policing, representing the most significant investment in rural policing in Victoria’s Police’s 167-year history.

“I know the challenges faced by our rural police, so these additional numbers will be a welcome relief,” he said.

“The additional numbers will assist our officers tackle key issues we face in rural areas such as family violence, drugs, road trauma and natural disasters.

“It also means more police on the beat than ever before, who will be working around the clock to protect the community, prevent crime and hold offenders to account.”

Member for Macedon Mary-Anne Thomas said the announcement was a ‘major boost’ for the community.

“These police will be out in the community protecting and serving residents to reduce crime, backed by the resources they need to target and prevent burglaries, violent crime, and family violence,” she said.