16 April 2005


**I'm sure if the PISSNI wanted to break down the door and raid this house, they would have found it quickly enough.


As a house was being burgled three times during broad daylight, the PSNI were busy trying to find the Somerton Road on map!

North Belfast DUP councillor Ian Crozier has branded the PSNI’s handling of a recent burglary incident in his constituency as farcical and demanded an investigation by the Police Ombudsman Nuala O’Loan.
During the incident which took place a fortnight ago a house in the Somerton Road area was broken into by a gang of youths three times in a matter of a few hours in broad daylight.
On each occasion, a neighbour saw the youths and telephoned the PSNI at Tennant Street.
On each occasion, they failed to turn up.
When the witness called for a third time, they asked why the PSNI had not yet appeared, and were told that the police at Tennant Street had been unable to find the Somerton Road on a map.
According to the North Belfast Councillor, the PSNI eventually arrived more than two hours after they had first been called and went to the wrong house.
“When the eyewitness explained to me what had happened, I was absolutely appalled,” Ian Crozier said.
“I am sure that all right-thinking people will regard the police response to this incident as absolutely unacceptable and this is why I have written to Nuala O’Loan and asked her to look into it.
“What makes matters worse is that this incident came only a month after police took more than two hours to respond to the mugging of a pensioner in the same area and assured local people that it wouldn’t happen again.”
Recently, residents from the Ashfield, Queen Victoria Gardens and Somerton area have been trying to combat crime and anti-social behaviour in their neighbourhood.
The campaign was stepped up after a 76-year-old woman was assaulted during a burglary in which her car was stolen in October 2003.
“Local residents are to be commended for their positive approach to dealing with problems in their area, however morale will not be helped by the police consistently letting them down like this,” Ian Crozier said.
The PSNI says it was unable to comment on to matter due to the involvement of the Police Ombudsman.

Journalist:: Áine McEntee

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