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Appeal for next of kin of John Lewis Rimmer

Merseyside Police are appealing for your help to trace the next of kin of a man from Southport who recently passed away.

John Lewis Rimmer, 74, of Kensington Road, Southport passed away at his home address on May 12 and unfortunately we haven’t been able to track down his family members.

His death is not being treated as suspicious.

Anyone that knows John or how we can get in contact with his next of kin should call Coroner’s Department Manager Viv Hartnett on Vivien.Hartnett@merseyside.police.uk or call 0151 777 1641.

Cyber Champions enlisted in schools to spread word about internet crime

Merseyside Police has enlisted the help of a team of teenage ’Cyber Champions’ in schools across Merseyside to help spread the word about internet crime.

An event will be held Wednesday May 8, at Merseyside Police HQ to launch the scheme, attended by school pupils and the latest Cyber Champions who are being trained to educate fellow students on cybercrime.

The initiative promotes digital literacy and e-safety and is supported by professional services company KPMG. Similar initiatives have been adopted in other areas of the country where thousands of children, parents and senior citizens have participated in workshops.

PCSOs have already been joined by specialists from KPMG, visiting schools across Merseyside to carry out workshops for children and their parents and guardians about staying safe online. Each school then designates their own ‘Cyber Champions’.

As well as helping other pupils, the role gives the Cyber Champions a sense of responsibility and the opportunity to develop their own interpersonal skills, and gain knowledge in cyber security – crucial skills valued by future employers.

Reports of cybercrime have increased by more than 80% in the last three years in Merseyside – from April 2016 to March 2017 there were 2,586 cybercrimes reported, from April 2017 to March 2018 there were 3,474 and in the last 12 months, from April 2018 to March 2019, there were 4,744.

Detective Chief Inspector Helen Bennett, from Merseyside Police’s Digital Forensics Team, said: “We know that reports of cybercrime have increased in recent years. This is in part due to increased awareness of the issue but the rise in use of apps and social media platforms means that there are more ways than ever for criminals to try to exploit people on the internet.

“That is why it is so important to ensure young people are equipped to avoid becoming the next victim.

This is a great initiative and is a win-win for all involved. The young Cyber Champions themselves get to develop skills that will set them in really good stead for the future; their fellow pupils will get the knowledge to prevent themselves from becoming victims of cybercrime; and we as a police force have seen some really important messages spread widely by an enthusiastic group of young volunteers.

“By engaging with schools we will also hear about any trends about youngsters that our Cyber Crime officers might need to keep an eye on.”

DCI Bennett added: “In the workshops, we discuss the different online channels, social media platforms and smart phone apps that young people use. And as the children themselves are often up to speed with the latest emerging trends and new apps, they are very well placed to identify any issues and causes for concern.

“The workshops are interactive and show some videos about the information children should avoid putting online as part of their digital footprint, and how to stay safe.

“We also broach important topics like cyber bullying, age restrictions for gaming and social media sites, security and privacy settings followed by sharing some further sources of support.”

Charlie Caldwell, from Carmel College, has just been made a Cyber Champion.

He said: “I am really looking forward to becoming a Cyber Security Champion as it will provide me with future opportunities.

“With this contribution to helping children stay safe online it will show my future employers that I am committed and willing to step outside of my comfort zone.

“Many people will recognise this as a very great achievement which can help me when seeking a job in an IT or even Business region. Helping children staying safe online provides me with comfort, that we can prevent children from facing any difficulties or security issues online in the future.”

Johnny Lau, from Carmel College, who has also recently been made a Cyber Champion said: “I was delighted that this opportunity was given. I think it’s a good opportunity with today’s social climate for people to know how to be safe.”

If you are interested in children at your school becoming Cyber Champions, please email: digitalpcso@merseyside.pnn.police.uk

Suspected stolen property found in Hightown – Is this yours?

Merseyside Police are issuing images of suspected stolen property found earlier this week in Hightown in an effort to reunite the items with their owners.

On Monday, April 15, various items were found in Blundell Road following a report from a member of the public that two men had discarded them on being seen. It is not yet known from where these items were taken, but they are described as follows:

Carrera Vulcan mountain bike


Apollo Evade mountain bike

Panasonic Toughbook laptop


Various coins, some antique

If you recognise any of these items as yours or belonging to someone you know, please contact @MerPolCC with reference number 19100178859 and be in touch.

Anyone with information about suspected burglary can contact @MerPolCC, call 101 or our dedicated Operation Castle team operation.castle@merseyside.pnn.police.uk or @CrimestoppersUK anonymously on 0800 555 111 #OpCastle #BeatTheBurglar

New Merseyside Police General Enquiry Office opening times

Merseyside Police is changing the opening hours of its General Enquiry Offices (GEO) across the county on 15 April 2019.

The change follows an extensive review of the GEO service by the force, which found that front line police officers were frequently having to provide cover in the GEOs to keep them open to the public. This meant that the force was having to take police officers off the streets of Merseyside, preventing them from responding to emergency incidents.

The review also identified that the number of people visiting GEOs across Merseyside has significantly reduced in recent years. On average, just one customer per hour attend GEOs in the force, although some GEOs have a higher footfall than others.

To prevent the force from having to backfill the GEO service with frontline officers who should be out on the streets protecting our communities a decision was made to change the GEO opening hours in February 2019, whilst the force sought to recruit additional staff to provide a more sustainable GEO service.

The additional staff have now been recruited and from Monday, 15 April the opening hours of GEOs across Merseyside will be as follows:

Birkenhead, St Anne Street, Southport, St Helens and Huyton will be open between 10am and 6pm Monday to Saturday
• Wallasey, Marsh Lane, Admiral Street, Walton Lane, Speke, Kirkby and Newton-le-Willows will be open between 10am and 6pm Monday to Friday
The public will also have access to Community Police Stations that have been introduced across Merseyside. These provide an additional service in our local communities.

Deputy Chief Constable Serena Kennedy, said: “The GEO service is only one way in which the public can contact us, we have community police stations across Merseyside and at the start of last year we introduced a dedicated social media desk in our call centre giving the public the ability to contact us online 24 hours a day, seven days a week, to report non-emergency incidents, or to ask for advice. In the last 14 months the desk has dealt with an average of 2500 contacts every month.

Unconfirmed report firearm was seen in Bootle

Police can confirm officers attended an unconfirmed report a firearm was seen in Bootle today (Thursday 4 April 2019).

A report was received at 12.40pm that a male wearing a navy-coloured North Face tracksuit was in possession of what a member of the public believed may have been a firearm on Stanley Road.

He was then seen to enter a newsagent on Stanley Road alongside a group of five males, who left on foot a short time later.

Officers are in attendance and enquires to establish the full circumstances are ongoing.

Following a search of the area no weapon or anyone matching the descriptions of the males have been located.

Witnesses are being spoken to and CCTV opportunities explored.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Merseyside Police social media desk via Twitter @MerPolCC or Facebook Merseyside Police CC. You can also call 101 quoting incident reference 397 of 4 April or contact the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously, on 0800 555 111 or via their online form at: https://crimestoppers-uk.org/give-information/give-information.

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