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Bristol Council resconsider PCSO funding cuts

Bristol City Council are to reconsider proposed cuts to PCSO funding which were announced last week as part of budget proposals by the Mayor George Ferguson. A cross-party working group has now been set up to try and retain as many PCSOs in Bristol as possible.

It comes after concerns were raised by the community and the Avon and Somerset Police and Crime Commissioner.

We have been consulting with the police as part of the review in an effort to find a way forward. There is recognition, of course, of the role PCSOs play in tackling crime and the fear of crime in our communities.

But at the same time we face tough choices when it comes to making savings in the current climate of increased financial pressures.

– Councillor Gus Hoyt, chairman of working group

Recommendations will be made next week in advance of final budget proposals being agreed.

Police statement over PCSO conviction

Avon and Somerset Police have released the following statement following the conviction of 48-year-old Lawrence Dunn, of Axbridge Road, Burnham-on-Sea, for serious sex offences.

He was formerly a Police Community Support Officer.

Lawrence Dunn was today found guilty of eight offences committed against a young person while in post as a Police Community Support Officer._

The court heard compelling evidence at the trial which highlighted the gross abuse of his position of trust.

Dunn had every opportunity to plead guilty following this investigation but instead put his victim through the trauma of a trial. The jury found him guilty of eight of the nine offences he was charged with.

Dunn resigned from his post when investigations into his conduct began. He has been remanded into custody for sentencing._

– Avon & Somerset Police

The statement continues:

We are disappointed with the actions of a man who was in a position of trust in our communities. We hope that this case sends out a stern message that any inappropriate conduct from officers within Avon and Somerset will be fully investigated.

– Avon & Somerset Police

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Former PCSO convicted of serious sex offences

A former police community support officer in Somerset is facing a long prison sentence after being convicted of serious sex offences against a teenage girl.

Lawrence Dunn was found guilty of sex offences at Taunton Crown Court Credit: David Wilcox/PA Wire

48-year-old Lawrence Dunn from Burnham-on-Sea, was found guilty at Taunton Crown Court of eight offences of sexual activity with a child and one of attempted sexual activity with a female.

Judge Eric Salomonsen said it was a harrowing case and the evidence against him was compelling. It was a gross abuse of trust and of his position as a community support officer.

Dunn was remanded in custody for reports and sentencing later and was ordered to sign the Sex Offenders’ Register.