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.
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.