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3 June 2014, 05:47
Police in an area of Peterborough are completing reports in a shopping centre, garden store and community centre to be more visible to residents.
Firms in the Hampton area of the city are allowing officers to use their public spaces, to file reports online.
The idea is to increase their visibility to residents, and prevent them from needing to spend too much time at police stations.
If the trial is deemed successful, it will be extended across the rest of Cambridgeshire.
Officers have been given laptops and tablet computers so they can work away from their desks.
Officers will visit their station at the start of their duty to collect the equipment, before before heading to the designated sites for a shift briefing.
The confirmed sites where this trial is taking place so far are the food court in Serpentine Green Shopping Centre, Dobbies Garden Centre and Orton Centre.
Inspector Andy Bartlett said: "When I joined the police many years ago, computers were not in frequent use and I am sad to say that there were as many forms then as there are now.
While most of our paperwork is nowadays completed via a computer, up until now our officers have still had the necessity to come back to the station to complete their work on desktop computers.
This rollout of mobile technology allows the officers to get back out where they want to be; on the streets of our neighbourhoods providing a visible and reassuring presence.
The trial will be in two parts, the first being to hold our daily shift briefings in public spaces which I believe will professionalise our briefings but also lift some of the myths about what we do.
The second part is around where we go to complete paperwork.
I want us to be driving to areas where we know there has been high crime levels and anti-social behaviour and park up there to complete it.
The public are reassured when they see police out and about and it is proven that a visible presence reduces not only crime and ASB but also the fear of it.
I want to encourage members of the public to engage with my officers when they see them and also myself as I'll be working out and about too.
I'm very proud of the team I have at Hampton and I firmly believe that we can set the standard for policing in the 21st century."