Text service launched to combat rural crime

PUBLISHED: 13:00 20 January 2017

Portbury High Street is not fully open at the moment.

Portbury High Street is not fully open at the moment.

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Avon and Somerset Constabulary has launched a new text message service designed to help people in Somerset report information about suspected crimes in rural areas.

The new number – 81819 – was rolled out on Tuesday and will run on a trial basis for three months.

It will allow people to text information directly to the force’s rural crime team, who will be able to assess the information quickly and efficiently and take further action if necessary.

However, the force has warned the number will not be in operation 24/7, so anyone witnessing a crime or requiring immediate police assistance should still call 999.

Inspector Joanna Mines, from the Somerset rural crime team, said: “No matter how small or insignificant people may think information is, it may be a vital piece of a jigsaw that helps us fill in the gaps and either prevent a crime or bring offenders to justice.”

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