Rural crime and antisocial behaviour continue to be tackled by Community Action Team

Published: 14th December 2022

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The Scottish Borders Community Action Team is continuing to tackle rural crime and antisocial behaviour across the region, whilst the team has also been involved in a number of drug searches.

The Community Action Team (CAT), a policing resource of two teams of seven officers funded by ourselves, has been tackling issues of antisocial behaviour in Peebles and Galashiels over recent months, resulting in a reduction in reports of incidents. However, following reports of damage to vehicles in the Burnfoot area of Hawick, this will also be a focus for the team throughout December and into January.

Cross-border checks

The team has again been involved with colleagues from Northumbria Police and officers from Dumfries and Galloway and Police Scotland’s Roads Policing section to carry out overnight checkpoints along the border to tackle rural and acquisitive crime and act as a deterrent to would-be travelling criminals.

Alongside other Police Scotland colleagues the CAT officers took part in six drug searches during November, resulting in the seizure of over £5,000 in cash and quantities of cannabis, heroin and diazepam.

A monthly meeting is held between a group of cross party Councillors, Council officers and Police Scotland’s CAT sergeants to provide feedback on recent Community Action Team activities and agree priority tasks for the coming month. Key data and associated analysis as well as community feedback is used as part of the tasking process.

Local priorities

As a result of the December meeting, the CAT will be continuing to target illegal and dangerous parking and speeding in communities, whilst antisocial driving by off-road motorbikes in the Monynut Forest area near Duns will also be tackled through regular patrols and through the identification of preventative measures.

If your community is impacted by speeding then there is also now the opportunity to request through your Community Council the deployment of life-size pop-up police officers to be positioned by the roadside in key locations.

Councillor Julie Pirone, chair of the CAT Strategic Oversight Group

“The Community Action Team is continuing to tackle those issues most important to local communities, from drugs to antisocial behaviour and speeding.

“I am pleased to see that the actions taken in Peebles and Galashiels to tackle antisocial behaviour over recent months have had the desired effect and significantly reduced incidents. It is essential that issues continue to be reported properly to enable us to work with our Police Scotland colleagues to ensure that we keep our communities as safe as possible.”

In the run up to the festive period the following safety and security messages have been provided by Police Scotland:

Party safety

With the festive season upon us many people will be out celebrating in pubs and clubs for their festive nights out, so please help everyone stay safe.

  • Plan your night out and how you will get home
  • Take your mobile phone with you and make sure it is fully charged
  • Stay with friends and don't leave with strangers
  • If you feel very drunk or unwell after a small amount of alcohol then ask a trusted friend or a member of the club/pub management for help
  • If you think you have been spiked, report it to the police and seek medical assistance. All reports will be investigated
  • Don’t take drugs or new psychoactive substances (sometimes misleadingly called ‘legal highs’)
  • Don’t have sex with anyone who is too drunk or under the influence of drugs as this means they can't give consent and in Scots Law this is rape
  • Look after bags and valuables
  • Keep enough money to pay for your journey home
  • Use a trusted taxi company that you have used before, or arrange for a friend or family member to collect you
  • Stay alert at cash machines, be aware of who’s behind you and keep money and your PIN out of view

Home security

During the festive season it is important to ensure your valuable are safe at home. Here are some tips to help to keep criminals away.

  • Keep presents and valuables out of sight
  • Open and close curtains at the appropriate time of day
  • Do not advertise on social media when you are going to be out
  • Use timer switches on lights and radios to make it look as if your home is occupied
  • Ensure all doors and windows are secure when you leave and when you go to bed
  • If possible use security lighting at the front and back of your property
  • Make sure all garden tools and ladders are locked away when not being used
  • Use a good quality lock on any garden sheds and outhouses
  • Make a note of all makes, models and serial numbers of your property
  • Create a free private and secure inventory of all your personal property at

To report a crime call 999 in an emergency. Use 101 or the Police Scotland website for non-emergency issues. To anonymously report suspicious activity or crimes call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.