Our Sussex Police and Crime Commissioner, Katy Bourne OBE, launches an online survey into dog thefts across the county ...
Today I launched, in partnership with the Association of Police & Crime Commissioners, the first national public conversation on dog thefts. A topic which has been dominating social media newsfeeds and the mainstream media for the last couple of weeks.
The Home Secretary is currently reviewing the issue of pet theft and what future enforcement may look like with potentially tougher penalties for perpetrators.
I want to make sure that your views are reflected in any national discussions and the decisions made thereafter.
The responses to this survey will also allow police forces to better understand the public’s views on this crime and how they might improve their response to any concerns you may have.
Demand for dogs as pets has increased during the coronavirus pandemic. The cost of some puppies, on Pets4Homes, is currently as high as £3,000, making them a valuable commodity to criminals.
Inspector Andrea Leahy from the Sussex Police Rural Crime Team said: “We support this national survey and the team are working tirelessly to collate information and intelligence on this worrying crime.
"We have dedicated officers covering the county who review every report that comes into us. We would like to encourage the public to report all suspicious circumstances and read our crime prevention advice on our website. We are dedicated to keeping your pets safe and will target any persons believed to be involved in this distressing crime.”
I know this is a growing concern for the public and that fear has been perpetuated over the last couple of weeks with shocking reports in the media of more dogs being snatched by criminals.
I’m pleased to see the Home Secretary recognising the devastating impact of this crime and I hope that the results of this survey will give the Government the evidence it needs to take more robust action against perpetrators.
The 60-second survey will be open until 17:00 on Friday 12th March.
Please have your say today by clicking here: https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/dogtheft