Hundreds of extra police in regional Victorian communities

Dozens of communities across the state will soon receive an increased police presence, with regional Victorians set to benefit most from today’s announcement of new police resources.

An additional 788 police and 25 Protective Services Officers (PSOs) will be deployed across the state over the course of twelve months from May, with hundreds of officers headed for regional Victoria.

This is part of Victoria Police’s ongoing recruitment, training and deployment of more than 3,000 additional officers by April 2022.

580 police officers will be added to the frontline in total, with more than 350 of these headed towards regional centres such as Geelong, Warrnambool, Horsham, Goulburn Valley, Morwell and Bairnsdale.

In total, 117 police stations across the state will receive extra resources, which represents the most significant investment in regional policing in Victoria Police’s 167-year history.

Busy suburban areas including Monash, Whitehorse and Knox Police Service Areas will also receive additional police resources.

Almost 60 Divisional Highway Patrol officers and Road Policing Command positions will also be distributed to tackle the road toll in Victoria and ensure there is a visible police presence to deter risky and dangerous driver behaviour. This is on top of over 50 Divisional Highway Patrol officers already deployed over the previous two years.

For the first time, 48 new positions have been allocated to the Regional Crime Teams across the state. These positions will free up general duty resources by investigating complex networked offending within Victoria.

The remaining police officers are being deployed to specialist policing areas including Crime, Transit and Public Safety, State Emergency and Support, and Intelligence and Covert Support.

Training at the Academy is already underway with the new officers to be gradually rolled out to police stations and specialist areas by April 2021.

This is the third deployment of 2,729 new officers funded through the State Government’s Community Safety Statement.

In 2018, 825 officers were assigned across the state while 2019 saw the allocation of an additional 709 officers and 25 PSO’s.

This is in addition to the 406 additional resources provided to Victoria Police under the Government’s previous public safety response package, bringing the total number of additional police provided to 3261 by 2022.

These officers are now policing in busy suburban and regional growth areas including Wyndham, Melton, Greater Dandenong, Hume, Geelong, Ballarat, and Casey, where they are working hard to prevent crime, lock up offenders and keep their communities safe.

Deputy Commissioner Rick Nugent said:

“Today represents the biggest injection of regional officers in our 167-year history, with regional Victoria set to receive more than 350 frontline officers from May 2020,” Deputy Commissioner Nugent said.

“This is in addition to hundreds of frontline officers and dedicated family violence, crime investigation, highway patrol, and sexual offences and child abuse specialists already rolled out over the past two years.

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

“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.

“Our unwavering focus remains on tackling high harm offending which can often have traumatic and life-changing consequences for victims.

“The extra resources will also give police more time to focus on reducing crime that causes wide-spread harm across the community, such as drugs related offences.

“The influx of officers in regional areas will also assist us in enhancing our ability to provide immediate assistance when state disasters occur, such as bushfires or floods.”

Several factors are taken into consideration when allocating new resources, such as calls for assistance, reported crime, event management and traffic incidents, and the time required to provide these services.

The allocations of the 788 new police officers and 25 PSOs in work areas by Police Service Areas, Divisions and specialist units or commands are as follows:

EASTERN REGION – 313

Regional Crime Team (12)

ED1: Forest Hill Division (87)

PSA allocations:

• Whitehorse Police Service Area (19)

• Monash Police Service Area (27)

• Manningham Police Service Area (3)

• Boroondara Police Service Area (11)

Shared divisional resources (27):

• Divisional Highway Patrol (12)

• Divisional Crime Investigation Units (6)

• Divisional Sexual Offences &Child Abuse Investigation Teams (3)

• Divisional Crime Scene Services (4)

• Divisional Intelligence Units (2)

ED2: Knox Division (51)

PSA allocations:

• Knox Police Service Area (12)

• Maroondah Police Service Area (11)

• Yarra Ranges Police Service Area (8)

Shared divisional resources (20):

• Divisional Highway Patrol (6)

• Divisional Sexual Offences & Child Abuse Investigation Teams (14)

ED3: Goulburn Valley Division (41)

PSA allocations:

• Benalla Police Service Area (15)

• Shepparton Police Service Area (14)

• Mitchell Police Service Area (5)

Shared divisional resources (7):

• Divisional Crime Scene Services (1)

• Divisional Crime Investigation Unit (6)

ED4: Wangaratta Division (19)

• Wodonga Police Service Area (5)

• Wangaratta Police Service Area (10)

Shared divisional resources (4):

• Divisional Criminal Investigation Units (4)

ED5: Morwell Division (80)

PSA allocations

• Baw Baw Police Service Area (15)

• Latrobe Police Service Area (27)

• Bass Coast Police Service area (11)

Shared divisional resources (27):

• Divisional Highway Patrol (3)

• Divisional Crime Investigation Unit (19)

• Divisional Sexual Offences & child Abuse Investigation Units (2)

• Divisional Crime Scene Services (3)

ED6: Bairnsdale Division (23)

PSA allocations:

• East Gippsland Police Service Area (15)

• Wellington Police Service Area (8)

WESTERN REGION – 205

Regional Crime Team (12)

WD1: Geelong Division (58)

PSA allocations:

• Geelong Police Service Area (22)

• Surf Coast Police Service Area (5)

Shared divisional resources (31):

• Divisional Highway Patrol (8)

• Divisional Crime Investigation Unit (3)

• Divisional Sexual Offences & Child Abuse Teams (18)

• Divisional Crime Scene Services (2)

WD2: Warrnambool Division (35)

PSA allocations:

• Warrnambool Police Service Area (13)

• Southern Grampians Police Service Area (20)

Shared divisional resources (2):

• Divisional Crime Investigation Units (2)

WD3: Ballarat Division (2)

PSA allocations:

• Ballarat Police Service Area (1)

• Moorabool Police Service Area (1)

WD4: Horsham Division (44)

• Horsham Police Service Area (18)

• Northern Grampians Police Service Area (24)

Shared divisional resources (2):

• Divisional Crime Investigation Unit (2)

WD5: Bendigo Division (51)

PSA allocations:

• Bendigo Police Service Area (2)

• Macedon Ranges Police Service Area (9)

• Goldfields Police Service Area (14)

• Campaspe Police Service Area (12)

Shared divisional resources (14):

• Divisional Highway Patrol (1)

• Divisional Criminal Investigation Units (5)

• Divisional Sexual Offences & Child Abuse Teams (4)

• Divisional Crime Scene Services (2)

• Divisional Intelligence units (2)

WD6: Mildura Division (3)

PSA allocations:

• Swan Hill Police Service Area (1)

Shared divisional resources (2):

• Divisional Highway Patrol (2)

SOUTHERN METRO REGION – 30

Regional Crime Team (12)

SD1: Prahran Division (15)

PSA allocations:

• Port Phillip Police Service Area (4)

• Stonnington Police Service Area (9)

Shared divisional resources (2):

• Divisional Highway Patrol (2)

SD2: Moorabbin Division (3)

PSA allocations:

• Kingston Police Service Area (3)

NORTH WEST METRO REGION – 32

Regional Crime Team (12)

ND2: Westgate Division (7)

• Wyndham Police Service Area (1)

• Hobsons Bay Police service Area (2)

• Maribyrnong Police Service Area (3)

Shared divisional resources (1):

• Divisional Criminal Investigation Unit (1)

ND5: Diamond Creek Division (13)

PSA allocations:

• Banyule Police Service Area (4)

• Darebin Police Service Area (3)

• Nillumbik Police Service Area (1)

• Whittlesea Police Service Area (3)

Shared divisional resources (2):

• Divisional Highway Patrol (2)

SPECIALIST COMMANDS – 208 police and 25 PSOs

• Legal Services Department (27)

• Crime Command (41)

• Transit & Public Safety Command (38 police and 25 PSOs)

• State Emergency Support Command (8)

• Intelligence & Covert Support Command (31)

• Professional Standards Command (7)

• Forensic Services Department (3)

• People Development Command (6)

• Road Policing Command (21)

• Counter Terrorism Command (13)

• Family Violence Command (13)

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