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NewQuay hit by crime

06 Mar 2014

NewQuay hit by crime Image

NewQuay was hit by crime last month, raising security concerns amongst local retailers.

February saw break-ins, attempted break-ins and theft in the precinct.

On 4 February, Bill Price and his sons arrived at their Lats bakery in St Mangos lane at around 4am to find they had company.

Mr Price said two men were found hiding in the bakery leading to an altercation between the two groups.

Mr Price said he and his sons backed off when the intruders pulled out a screwdriver and a knife and the two men left the bakery empty-handed before getting into a silver Captiva parked nearby.

Mr Price said it was a horrible feeling to find intruders when arriving to work.

“We’re a small family business. What would have happened if it had been my wife who had come in and found these two clowns?”

Mr Price said there had been no security patrolling the area since precinct management was wrapped up in September last year.

In September MAB put a stop to precinct management fees and Jones Lang La Salle, the company contracted to manage the precinct, including precinct security, ceased operations.

Mr Price said more should be done to improve security in the area. “I don’t know any business along here that can afford $20 let alone pay for repairs to damage,” he said.

“If something doesn’t happen there will be a serious accident down here, one way or another.”

Detective Andrew Hammond said police enquiries were continuing in relation to the break-in. He urged anyone with any information about the crime to contact Crime Stoppers.

Lats wasn’t the only business targeted last month. The IGA on the corner of Rakaia Way and Caravel Lane had a glass door broken when two men attempted to break-in in the early hours of February 4, according to owner Henry Liu.

Mr Liu said MonJon Security services were patrolling the perimeter of the nearby Nolan building and interrupted the men before they could break in.

Mr Liu has called on council to install CCTV cameras in the precinct.

“City Council needs to make sure there are working security cameras,” Mr Liu said

A Caravel Lane business owner (who asked not to be identified) said more security, a stronger police presence and more cameras were needed.

A staff member’s bag was stolen from his premises on February 2 and, within two hours, $600 had been spent on credit cards which has been in the bag.

Melbourne West station commander Senior Sergeant Mick Wilmott said police were currently reviewing CCTV footage relating to the bag snatch from Caravel Lane and asked anyone who may have information about the crime to contact Melbourne West Police Station.

A council spokesperson said the City of Melbourne was not aware of the recent incidents and had no plans to install further CCTV cameras in NewQuay.

Council operates 53 “safe city” surveillance cameras across Melbourne, including four in Docklands.

NewQuay’s sole council-operated CCTV camera is located at the corner of Harbour Esplanade and NewQuay Promenade.

“The location of Safe City Cameras is determined based on the advice of Victoria Police. There are no plans before council to install further camera in NewQuay,” a council spokesperson said.

The spokesperson said the State Government had funded a further nine cameras for the network, including two on the Southern Cross Station walkway above Wurundjeri Way, which will be operational this month.

Council had operated a security patrol cart in Docklands, however that ceased in July last year.  Council continues to operate a mobile CCTV patrol vehicle capable of capturing 360-degree CCTV images between 10pm and 6pm throughout the city.

“This service (the Docklands patrol cart) was conceived at a time when occupation and activation of Docklands was low. However, vehicle patrols still operate in an approach consistent with all other suburbs in the City of Melbourne,” the spokesperson said.
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