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Police officers in the West Midlands are being attacked on a daily basis according to new figures released by Parliament. There were 423 assaults against officers on the force between April 2013 and April 2014. They included a near fatal car raid and a stabbing.
The Police Federation are calling on courts to hand out tougher sentences to anyone convicted of attacking a police officer at work.
“It shows how difficult the job is, but it should not be accepted as part of the job.
“You should be able to go out to work without the fear of being stabbed or ran over. It’s not just police officers that are attacked.....
I think anybody who is convicted of attacking any public servant should be dealt with as harshly as possible.
Detective Constable Stefan Ashton, from West Midlands Police Force CID, has spoken in more detail about the recent spate of 'sextortion' crimes in the region:
Since January we’ve seen a rise in the number of these offences in the West Midlands with victims in Wolverhampton, Birmingham, Dudley, Walsall and Coventry.
In most of the cases the videos have not actually been distributed but it’s nevertheless been an absolutely horrendous ordeal for the people involved, who are understandably very worried about the consequences of such images and videos being posted online.
The damage in the cases where the footage was shared with the victims’ Facebook friends cannot be underestimated – they are clearly devastated.
DC Ashton and his team have been investigating cases where boys and men aged between 14 and 46 have been targeted.
They are encouraging people not be tempted to engage in explicit online video conversations to avoid becoming a victim.
He went on to say:
The blackmailers are calculated and malicious and have complete disregard for the people they’re exploiting.
Cases of this type are notoriously complex and they often, despite our best efforts, go unsolved.
We are working closely with partners such as the National Crime Agency to crackdown on offenders but the only real way to prevent this from happening is by not taking part in such activity at all.
The moment you reveal yourself in an online video, you become vulnerable to exploitation and sadly it’s the blackmailers who instantly become in control of the situation.
Victims of 'sextortion' are usually targeted via social media sites, where they are lured into sexually-explicit video conversations.
The offender then sends a message to the victim, along with proof they have the footage, threatening to post it online if they do not pay a substantial sum of money.
A 'sextortion' victim from the Midlands has spoken of his terrible ordeal after he was threatened by blackmailers, saying he was "terrified".
The man, who wishes to remain anonymous, said the extortionists emailed a direct link to his online sex conversations to his girlfriend and threatened to do the same to his daughter unless he deposited $5,000 into an offshore bank account.
However, in his case the messages stopped when he said the incident had been reported to the police.
Police in the West Midlands are concerned by a recent spike in the number of 'sextortion' crimes and are warning people to be vigilant.
There have been eight such reports in the region since the turn of the year and on two occasions the criminals have carried out their threats when their victims have refused to give in to their demands.
'Sextortion' is a form of blackmail, whereby professional extortionists lure men into online sex chats under false pretences, before threatening to post footage online unless they pay thousands of pounds into offshore bank-accounts.
Nottinghamshire police has announced it is going to hold a public consultation about closing a number of police stations in order to save money. It says it is thinking of closing police stations in Sneiton and the Meadows and relocating staff elsewhere.
Nottinghamshire Police needs to save £12.7 million over the next 12 months.
We're searching for shoplifter from Tesco Express in Hamstead Rd, who, when faced with officers, armed himself with 2ft shard of glass...
Police are appealing for information from the public following a robbery in Leicester.
Detective Constable, Sandra Kelly, the investigating officer, said:
"We are appealing for anyone who was in the area and remembers seeing the incident or a group of men matching these descriptions to contact us.
“Perhaps you feel you might know one of the young men involved and can help with our investigation. Please contact us if you think you can help.”
All three men are described as being black and wearing dark clothing.
The first is 6ft tall and of a large build, whilst the other two men are both described as being around 5'2" tall and of medium build.
The British Transport Police is appealing for the public’s help to identify a man they would like to speak to in connection with an assault on a 65-year-old man at Birmingham Moor Street railway station.
Officers have released a CCTV image of a man they believe will have information which can assist the investigation into the incident which took place in January.