Four officers to patrol student area

Kingston Police have assigned four officers to proactively patrol the Queen’s area for the short term.

“They’re going to be walking the beat in that area, making themselves acquainted with the students,” said Const. Neil Finn, police spokesperson. “So the students, basically, get used to having the police there and know that if there’s any problems or any needs, they can contact these people.”

Finn said Police Chief Bill Closs and Insp. Brian Cookman made the decision to designate the officers because the area usually sees an upswing of crime during the coming holiday season. Those perpetrating the crimes are not students, he said.

“It’s not necessarily just because it’s Queen’s, it’s because we feel there’s a need for extra proactive policing in a certain area,” he said.

He added that officers have also been specifically assigned to the north end of the city, where the police feel there is a similar need.

Finn said the officers began their duties earlier this week. Police presence will extend through the holiday season, though he couldn’t specify whether or for how long it would continue afterwards. They will patrol the area including University Avenue west to Portsmouth Avenue and north to Princess Street. The presence will also be extended to the Ghetto, JDUC and on-campus area, including around residences.

He said that while Closs and Cookman may have decided to designate officers with the recent tensions surrounding police presence in the Ghetto during Homecoming weekend in mind, it was not a big factor.

“What we’re trying to achieve is a twofold thing,” he said. “We are down here, we’re not the bad guys, we’re here to help, and let’s secure your residences for Christmas because there will [likely] be break-ins and there will be a lot of property taken.”

Finn said students should also take precautions to protect their valuables if they leave the city for the holidays.

“Lock your doors, make sure all your valuables are secured,” he said. “If you’re leaving for the holidays, try and have someone with a key come check the premises on a regular basis.”

When commenting, be considerate and respectful of writers and fellow commenters. Try to stay on topic. Spam and comments that are hateful or discriminatory will be deleted. Our full commenting policy can be read here.