The woman who exposed the Rotherham abuse scandal has said the town 'needs to move on', following the publication of a report which says child abuse and exploitation was not given priority by South Yorkshire Police.
Jayne Senior, who founded the charity Risky Business to work with vulnerable young people, said that the situation in Rotherham is not unique. Speaking to ITV Calendar she described it child sexual exploitation as an issue that is "happening all across the UK and we need to get a handle on it."
Commenting that there have been 'quite significant improvements' in the way victims are handled since she began her work in 1999, Jayne added that she hopes senior managers can learn from the mistakes that were made in Rotherham.
The youth worker, whose whistleblowing led to the scandal finally being uncovered, said officers who have been highlighted as being involved must be brought to justice, but added that it is difficult for the town to move forward while ever there are ongoing investigations and reports due to be published.
Eight lambs have died after being shot at a farm in Doncaster.
Police are investigating after the incident at Stoupers Gate farm, near Hatfield, overnight Monday.
Six lambs were found dead by the farmer on Tuesday morning. Two others had to be put down.
Chief Inspector Adrian Brown said: “This incident has shocked the farming community and has caused a significant amount of distress to the farmer.
“This act of violence is concerning and it’s vitally important we identify the person or people responsible for this incident.
“If you saw anything suspicious, or have any information that could help us find out who did this, we need to hear from you.”
Anyone with information should call South Yorkshire Police on 101.
Three criminal investigations are being carried out into police officers connected with the Rotherham child sexual exploitation scandal.Read the full story ›
A burglar has been jailed for over four years after his blood was found at the scene of his crime.
33-year-old Brett Thomas, from Renishaw, was jailed for 4 years and 4 months at Sheffield Crown Court after pleading guilty to two burglaries.
Thomas was arrested by officers after his DNA was matched to blood found near to glass shards from the door of the flat he broke into in the Halfway area of Sheffield in November of last year.
Thomas was a prolific burglar who now has some time in prison to contemplate his actions and the suffering he has caused to householders who have been through the awful experience of coming home to find their properties have been broken into.
Rural businesses in Barnsley are being advised to protect their property to help drive down rural crime in the district. Opportunistic thieves often target businesses such as farms due to their location, and Inspector Julie Mitchell from the Barnsley West Local Policing Team wants to encourage rural businesses to take steps in order to protect themselves.
Due to the vast area they cover, rural businesses can be particularly hard to police and despite Police Community Support Officers (PCSOs) regularly patrolling these rural areas across the district, businesses such as farms are often targeted for high value machinery. I would encourage any business, but particularly members of the farming industry, to take certain steps in order to help protect their business and property. Marking pieces of high value machinery and equipment will act as a deterrent to thieves and will also help to identify any stolen property. There are several types of marking available including forensic and ultra-violet marking. Ensuring that buildings, doors and padlocks are secure will also help to protect property within a business. “I would like to reassure residents that rural crime and protecting businesses is one of our priorities and our PCSOs are currently in the process of visiting farms in the area to provide a crime reduction assessment and follow up with appropriate advice. This is also available to any business that wants it and I would urge any business who would like crime prevention advice to get in touch.
Below are some tips on how you can protect your business and how to find out more and get in touch.
- Make sure areas are well secured and locks on windows and doors are intact.
- Keep equipment hidden and out of view from areas that are particularly on show or easy to access.
- Ensure padlocks are secure and where possible, always use a closed shackle padlock as these are much harder to cut. For additional security, have a fabricated metal covering fitted over the padlock to protect it from being easily cut.
- Mark and photograph all valuable items where possible. This makes it easier for items to be identified and returned, should they be stolen.
- *If possible, install alarms or CCTV cameras. This will further protect the business while once again acting as a deterrent for thieves.
- Carry out regular inspections of any outbuildings to ensure they are secure and that nothing has been tampered with over time.
- To book your free security assessment email email@example.com.
- To access a free business toolkit visit southyorks.police.uk/bizkits.
- Call 101 to report a crime or visit southyorkshire.police.uk/reportcrime to report a crime online.
Three men have been arrested following an alleged shooting at a Sheffield pub on Boxing Day.
The men, aged in their 30s, were arrested on New Year's Eve on suspicion of attempted murder and remain in custody being questioned by officers.
At around 10.20pm on Saturday, December26, the emergency services were called to the Old Harrow pub in Main Street, Grenoside.
A 26-year-old man was taken to hospital with suspected gunshot wounds. He remains in hospital in a stable condition, recovering from his injuries.
“We know that this pub was busy on Boxing Day night and that there were a number of people either in the pub or outside that may have seen what happened.
“I’d like to appeal to those people directly to come forward and talk to us about what they saw. Any information you have could help us piece together what happened that night.
“I’d also like to reassure the local community that we are working hard to identify those involved in this incident and we are grateful for their understanding while we carry out our enquiries.”
Three further people, two men and a woman, were arrested earlier in the week in connection with the incident and remain on bail pending further enquiries.
A murder investigation has been launched in Sheffield after the body of a man was found in the Darnall area of the city on New Year's Eve.
Police were called to an area of Staniforth Road, near to the junction with Frederick Street, at 11.23pm, where the body of a man was found with serious head injuries
Investigations are ongoing to identify the man, who is believed to be aged in his twenties, and a post mortem is due to take place today to find the exact cause of death.
At this early stage our main focus is finding out who this man is establishing the circumstances leading to his death in the last hour of New Year's Eve.
"We believe there were a number of men involved in an assault shortly before officers arrived at the scene where the man was found unconscious and despite treatment from paramedics sadly died a short time later.
"While I understand that incidents like this are worrying for those living locally we have increased patrols by neighbourhood officers to reassurance residents.
"The public often play a key part in any investigation and I would like to hear from anyone who saw an assault in the area of Staniforth Road last night around 11pm. I would also urge anybody who may have been involved in the altercation to contact police and provide me with their version of what took place.
"This investigation is a priority and will have all the resources you would expect to establish what took place and ensure anyone responsible for this man's death will face the full consequences of their actions."
Any witnesses or anyone who can assist the investigation is asked to contact police via 101 and quoting incident reference number 1023 of the 31 December.
Part of Staniforth Road is expected to remain closed for most of today while the scene continues to be forensically examined.
A murder investigation has been launched after a man died of stab wounds in Sheffield.
The 29-year-old victim, who hs not been named, was treated at the scene by paramedics but died of his injuries a short time later.
Two people, a 36-year-old man and a 27-year-old woman, were arrested at the scene on suspicion of murder and both remain in custody at the present time.
"I understand the local community will be understandably shocked and upset by the events this morning.
"While the investigation is at an early stage, I would like to reassure residents that I do not believe there is any wider danger to members of the public and we are not looking for anyone else in connection with the investigation."
Drug driving now carries the same penalties as drink driving, and to mark six months since the change in legislation, South Yorkshire Police and South Yorkshire Safer Roads Partnership have launched a campaign aimed at raising awareness of the consequences should you get behind the wheel of your car while under the influence of drugs.
“Almost 50-years ago, the drink drive law was introduced and drivers had to learn, understand and adhere to the law to keep themselves, as well as others, safe on the roads. “This is the aim with our campaign; we want drivers to understand the implications of driving under the influence of drugs and to raise awareness with drivers that drug driving now carries exactly the same penalties and consequences of drink driving.
“Banned for a minimum of a year, a criminal record, a fine and potentially up to six months in prison. We want to ensure people abide by the new law to make the roads in South Yorkshire safer.”
On March 2, this year, the law changed regarding drug driving. Previously it was only an offence under Section 4 of the Road Traffic Act (RTA) 1988, driving whilst unfit through drink or drug. It is now an offence underSection 5A Road Traffic Act 1988, driving while over the prescribed limit (OPL), as with drink driving.
There are legal and illegal drugs that are included under the new law and limits have been set by the Government for both.
Roadside drugs kits are now used by officers if they suspect a driver may have drugs in their system, alongside field impairment tests that have always been used when a driver is suspected of being under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
The kits highlight within minutes if a driver has either class A drug cocaine or class B drug cannabis in their system, resulting in the driver being arrested and taken into custody where a blood sample is taken and sent away to the lab to determine the actual amounts of the drug present.
“We developed a strategic and tactical plan to utilise the roadside kits effectively, and in the last six months we have conducted 328 roadside tests, which have resulted in 184 arrests.
“This equates to 56% of drivers tested having drugs in their system, which is quite concerning and we want people to realise they are potentially risking their life, as well as others, if they get behind the wheel of a car under the influence of drugs."
“Driving under the influence of drugs is extremely dangerous and can affect driving skills in a number of ways; your reaction time may be slower, your vision can be distorted and your concentration may lapse.
“The Safer Roads Partnership is trying to educate people that driving when you are unfit to do so because of any type of drug in your system puts you, your passengers and other road users at greater risk.
"If you are taking prescription or over-the-counter medicines and you are not sure if you should drive, talk to your doctor, pharmacist or healthcare professional.
“As part of the change in legislation, all our young driver safety interventions which are delivered in schools and colleges now include information about the changes and the dangers of driving while under the influence.
“We are determined to make South Yorkshire roads safer and protect drivers in our county from the irresponsible and thoughtless actions of others.”
The two agencies that have taken the brunt of the criticism that followed the Jay Report say their primary focus over the last year has been persuading victims in Rotherham to trust them again.
South Yorkshire Police and Rotherham Council say they have gone a long way to dismantle the organisational culture that allowed police officers and council officials to treat young abuse victims as wayward irritants.
Ian Thomas, Rotherham Council's strategic director of children's services, was brought in at the end of last year to rescue a beleaguered department.
He said he was as shocked as anyone by the "industrial scale" of what Professor Jay uncovered, but when he arrived in December he found a team committed to turning things around.
"There was a sense of acceptance when I spoke to people and, when I spoke to staff, they wanted to be part of the solution.
"For me, it's about really listening to what children and young people tell us and a culture of never giving up on a child again.
"We're trying to instil that but it does take time.
"We've put things in place to improve our service, improve our practice. Things are moving in the right direction but its not done yet. Progress is being made, green shoots, but there's still a long way to go."
The director said his team is currently supporting 2,300 children, of whom 73 are sexual exploitation cases. He said extra social workers have been drafted in and he hopes a decrease in individual staff workload will give them a better chance to do their work properly.
"Over the last 12 months, if nothing else, restoring confidence has been really, really important and we've still got a journey to go on.
"The key focus has been around the victims and survivors. We need to understand better what the issues are for them and we could have done better and what we need to do for the future."
Mr Harwin said he understands that the public want to see arrests and perpetrators jailed.
He said South Yorkshire Police has arrested 460 people for child abuse offences in the last 12 months with 76 of these suspected of involvement in "grooming and facilitation".
And he said 54 people have been charged with child sexual exploitation related offences across the force, 22 in Rotherham.
The senior officer said there are currently 155 live CSE investigations in South Yorkshire, with 46 of these in Rotherham.
He said there are still many barriers to bringing suspects to justice but he said his officers now had other tools, short of prosecution, to control suspected offenders, including abduction notices and sexual harm prevention orders.
"Victim Support identified a real need in victims for one familiar face to support them through the whole experience of deciding whether to report abuse, being interviewed by the police, and their case making its way through the criminal justice system.
"We are providing that consistent support through our Vulnerable Victims project, which is funded by South Yorkshire PCC.
"Victim Support's specially trained staff and volunteers offer free, confidential information and support to anyone affected by crime - regardless of when the crime took place or if the police are involved.
"Call our Supportline team on 08 08 16 89 111 or visit victimsupport.org.uk to find out how we can help."