Police to visit high-risk families

NICCI MCDOUGALL
Last updated 14:39 20/12/2012
Southland Times photo
ROBYN EDIE/Fairfax NZ
Southern District area commander Inspector Lane Todd.

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Southern police will increase visits to the region's high-risk family violence offenders in the coming weeks to try and curb family violence during the festive season.

Southern District area commander Inspector Lane Todd said family violence and alcohol-fuelled disorderly behaviour traditionally increased during the festive season.

Police visited high-risk family violence offenders weekly but would increase those visits during the next few weeks, he said.

Police were also taking a proactive approach to alcohol-fuelled offending and had met with Invercargill Licensing Trust management to discuss prevention, he said.

Employers were urged to keep employees safe tomorrow, traditionally ''tradies day'', by ensuring they supplied food and helped with transport for staff if they were drinking alcohol, he said.

A large number of police would be working throughout the holiday period including additional staff in Riverton, Te Anau and Stewart Island.

Sergeant Phil Berryman, of Invercargill police youth services, said youths who were drinking should drink in moderation, make sure they were in a safe environment and not walk home alone if they were incapable of looking after themselves.

''You've got to consider what you're capable or incapable of, and are you able to protect yourself from other people,'' he said.

Sergeant Brock Davis, of Invercargill, said often offenders took advantage of people being away from homes and businesses during the festive period.

People should ensure their homes were secure, doors and windows had effective catches and locks and sensor lights were installed if possible. Keys should not be left hidden outside and vehicles, garages and garden sheds should also be secured, he said.

Tips to reduce the likelihood of becoming a victim of disorderly, anti-social or violent offending:
* Act confidently.
* Carry valuables discreetly
* Drink sensibly
* Look after friends
* Avoid confrontations
* Choose venues wisely
Source: Invercargill police

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