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Child abuser jailed for 20 years

A court heard that the 80-year-old abused his victims in the 1960s and 70s. Credit: Dorset Police

A man who sexually abused three girls over a 16-year period has been jailed for a total of 20 years.

Frederick Bailey, from Wiltshire, has been convicted of 15 sexual offences including rape and indecent assault following a seven-day trial at Dorchester Crown Court.

A court heard that the 80-year-old abused his victims in the 1960s and 70s in the Bridport and Reading areas.

Man charged with murder of woman in North Dorset

Police were called to reports of a serious assault outside Jock's Barbers in Blandford. Credit: ITV News

A 49-year-old man has been charged with the murder of a woman in North Dorset.

44-year-old Katrina O'Hara was stabbed to death at Jock's Barbers in Blandford on Thursday 7 January.

The victim was pronounced dead at the scene after officers were called to reports of a serious assault. Miss O’Hara was officially identified and named by her family a few days later.

George Thomas is due before magistrates tomorrow (14 January).


Murder investigation launched in North Dorset

Detectives have launched a murder investigation following the death of a woman in North Dorset – with one man having been arrested.

A woman has been pronounced dead at a property in Blandford Forum after officers were called to reports of a serious assault on 7 January.

Officers are treating the circumstances surrounding the woman’s death as suspicious, and a murder investigation, led by Dorset Police’s Major Crime Investigation Team, has been launched.

A 49-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of murder.

Dorset Police's financial planning 'requires improvement'

A report published today says Dorset's police force requires improvement. Credit: ITV West Country

Dorset Police's financial planning requires improvement, according to a report published today.

The findings by Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC) says the force will only be able to respond to expected budget cuts if it develops clear and realistic financial plans.

Dorset Police says the poor assessment is itself a result of Government cuts.

Man seriously injured in police car crash in Dorset

A 28-year-old man from Yeovil has been seriously injured after being hit by a police car. It happened on Saturday evening (23 August) on the B3146 between Dorchester and Sherborne.

Dorset Police say one of their vehicles was in pursuit of a black Peugeot GTI which hit a road sign. The driver got out and then collided with the police car.

The man was taken to Dorset County Hospital with a seriously injured arm. He was arrested for driving offences.

I am appealing for witnesses to the collision to come forward and contact police.

I would also like to hear from anyone who witnessed the manner of driving of either vehicle leading up to the collision.

– Police Sergeant Dave Stroud, of Dorset Police’s Traffic Unit

Plan for more police officers in Dorset

Dorset plans for more Police officers & body cameras. Credit: ITV News West Country

Funding plans for 16 extra police officers and 300 body cameras are due to be considered by Dorset's crime panel.

County Crime Commissioner Martyn Underhill wants to increase the police part of the Council Tax by just under two per cent to pay for it.

Gloucestershire is looking for a 2% increase in funding. Credit: Anthony Devlin/PA Archive

Meanwhile in Gloucestershire the County Crime Panel will consider plans for a two per cent increase. Police and Crime Commissioner Martin Surl hopes the rise will pay for a crackdown on internet bullying and cyber crime.


Security firms guarding crime scenes

Major crime scenes in Dorset are being by private security staff rather than police officers. A trial is now underway in the county that'll see the idea tested for four months.

The force is taking the radical action in an attempt to free up police officers for other front line duties, meaning they don't have to spend hours standing by police tape.

But there are concerns this is just the first step in privatising parts of our police force. Martin Dowse reports.

  1. Meridian

Security firm to take over guarding crime scenes

A private security firm will be guarding serious crime scenes in Dorset from now on.

Dorset Police are outsourcing this part of their security to Securitas in a four month trial. Police say officers can now concentrate on frontline policing.

The work our Crime Scene Officers conduct is of the highest standard, having been police vetted and specifically trained for such a role prior to any deployment. Our density of branch network and front line staff enables us to deploy with pace, professionalism and the reliability you would expect from an organisation of our strength, depth and expertise. We look forward to supporting Dorset Police in this way in the months and years ahead.

– Mike Clancy, South West Area Director of Securitas
  1. Meridian

Trial for Securitas to guard major crime scenes

The private security firm Securitas Ltd will trial guarding major crime scenes so Dorset Police can go back on the front line.

Scenes of major crimes, such as murder and serious assault, were previously guarded by police officers taken from their day to day job.

But by getting the security company to guard the scene instead, between 2600 and 3600 hours will go back into police front line services.

Detective Chief Superintendent Mark Cooper, Head of Dorset Police Criminal Justice Department said, "Outsourcing has been tried and tested by other forces for a number of years and it has been found to be a very effective way of securing evidence."

More staff to answer police calls in Dorset

Dorset Police are to take on more staff and invest in new equipment for the force's non-emergency 101 number.

The Constabulary has had difficulties answering non-emergency calls promptly.

They say this was due to delays in recruitment and the roll-out of new technology.

It is vital, as we move into the busy summer holiday period, that we strengthen our plans to address these difficulties.

Both the Police & Crime Commissioner and myself are keen to ensure that we respond to public concern and we will keep the public updated on progress over the next few weeks.”

– Chief Constable Debbie Simpson, Dorset Police.

The public have, rightly, been vocal surrounding this crucial 101 non-emergency service and I have asked the Chief Constable to step up plans for service improvement.

I am pleased that the Force has announced its commitment to improving contact with our communities.”

– Martyn Underhill, Dorset Police and Crime Commissioner.
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