Hampshire Incidents

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Operation Scrooge: Campaign to target shoplifters and ASB in Test Valley

Officers from Andover and Romsey’s Neighbourhood Policing Team will be taking part in Operation Scrooge to deter shoplifters and reducing anti-social behaviour in the run-up to Christmas.

Operation Scrooge will see officers liaise with retailers, give advice to shoppers and carry out high-visibility patrols in Andover and Romsey town centres and retail parks.

Local officers will be conducting targeted patrols with the aim of preventing organised, and opportunistic, shop lifters.

They will also be targeting anti-social behaviour hotspots and engaging with the community on matters that concern them.

The campaign is due to finish on 24 December.

Test Valley Inspector Chris Taylor said: “As Christmas approaches, more and more people will be out and about in our town’s shops and banks.

“Test Valley is a safe place to live and work but it is not immune to people who wish to take advantage of shoppers and businesses at this time of year.

“The aim of our operation is to deter and detect crime and provide reassurance to the public and businesses.

“We will continue to use tactics that have proved successful in previous years to make sure those who commit crime in the town centre are dealt with robustly.

Police would also encourage retail outlets to report any thefts online. This enables us to build a better picture and target our resources in future years.”


Police would like to take this opportunity to remind people of the steps they can take to protect their property.

For shoppers, remember to: never leave a bag unattended in a trolley, even if for a couple of seconds make sure your handbag is closed, try to keep wallets in an inside pocket and out of sight from a potential pickpockets, keep your PIN number confidential, try to pay for items on a debit card, rather than carry large amounts of cash, if possible ensure all windows and doors are closed and locked before leaving your car

Businesses should: ensure high value stock is stored in a secure location – preferably in a locked area keep high value or desirable items close to staff when displayed on the shop floor log any suspicious activity, be alert when taking deliveries, especially with high value stock when placing additional stock out for Christmas, make sure it doesn’t block the view for your CCTV cameras, ensure all private areas are locked, and the public do not have access.

For more advice on thefts from a person, visit: https://www.hampshire.police.uk/cp/crime-prevention/theft-from-a-person/

More useful tips for businesses can be found here: