Quinns Rocks residents air concerns about drugs, hoons and burglaries at crime forum

About 40 people attended the Quinns Rocks crime forum.
About 40 people attended the Quinns Rocks crime forum.

QUINNS Rocks residents voiced frustration with crime issues and heard from police at a recent community forum.

More than 40 people attended the November 28 forum organised by resident Heather Cole at Quinns Rocks Sports Club.

During the meeting, residents raised a variety of issues including drug dealing, hooning, home burglaries, thefts and delays in police responses.

Clarkson Senior Sergeant Stephen Foley said overall burglary rates in the sub-district had dropped by a third since he became the officer-in-charge four years ago.

“Quinns Rocks is one of those areas that we have put a lot of work into,” he said.

Sgt Foley said the forum stemmed from issues in late September and early October, but police had charged people allegedly involved in burglaries and breaking into cars.

“We do have spikes every now and then,” he said.

Sgt Foley said in the week before the forum there had been three burglaries across the sub-district’s eight suburbs.

Asked for clarification on how people should report issues such as drug deals, Sgt Foley said people could call Crime Stoppers or contact the local station.

He said police intelligence looked at the information provided, and officers, detectives at Joondalup or the organised crime squad did a lot of work on issues such as drug dealing.

North West Metropolitan District Inspector Mike Dalla-Costa said there was “a lot of work going on behind the scenes”.

“While it might seem like a bit of a slow burn, the Crime Stoppers option is the best option,” he said.

“When you phone into Crime Stoppers, that goes forward into the district intelligence unit.”

Asked about police presence, Sgt Foley said officer numbers had increased in the sub-district as a result of the WA Police restructure in July.

“We now have 42 police at Clarkson police station – we’ve just about doubled our size,” he said.

Sgt Foley said that meant he could roster police patrols 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

One woman asked about an outlaw motorcycle gang clubrooms and Sgt Foley said there were none in Clarkson.

He said police could not deter motorcycle club members from living in the area, however if they broke the law, police could deal with them.

“The things that are happening in Quinns are not unique to Quinns – they are happening right across the metro area,” Sgt Foley said.

“Unfortunately there are drugs in the community and there are people who do the wrong thing.

“We are doing our best to address those matters.

“We would not recommend any sort of vigilante stuff because then you will probably end up getting yourself in trouble.

“The staff at Clarkson police station are very passionate about policing and what happens in the area.”

Insp Dalla-Costa said the perception that there was apathy among police was concerning.

“Clarkson Police Station within the Joondalup district is a bit of a stand-out – there’s a real passion among the people there,” he said.

Sgt Foley said his officers attended 695 calls from the public in October and arrested more than 100 people, laying more than 200 charges.

“They are working very hard – the amount of work makes me very proud for what they do for the community,” he said.

Sgt Foley urged people to report crime to police and not just post it on social media.

Residents suggested police keep a list of homes with CCTV to check if crimes occurred and asked why police didn’t share footage to catch criminals quickly.

Sgt Foley said initially police would share CCTV images across internal networks, and that often led to officers in other areas recognising someone involved.

“If we don’t have a lot of success, we give it to media, social media and things like that,” he said.

One man said it was demotivating when people reported crimes but police didn’t appear to follow up or respond immediately.

While the information might not be sufficient for police to lay charges, Sgt Foley said it added to the intelligence they collected and could help them solve other crimes.

Asked about response times, Insp Dalla-Costa said that would depend on the circumstances and police availability, as their top priority would be to attend jobs where lives were at risk.

People at the meeting welcomed a suggestion by Wanneroo Mayor Tracey Roberts that they set up a residents’ association.