Gangs targeted over shootings

Wycombe Area Commander Superintendant Gilbert Houalla

Wycombe Area Commander Superintendant Gilbert Houalla

First published in News by

GANGS are being targeted by police in Wycombe as they seek to get to the root cause of violent crime seen this year in the district.

Wycombe Area Commander Superintendant Gilbert Houalla told a public meeting the force is examining the core reasons behind crimes such as shootings which have happened in 2012.

Officers are gathering and analysing intelligence on key individuals involved in gangs, he said.

There were two shootings in Wycombe district at the start of the year.

Supt. Houalla, speaking at a Wycombe District Council meeting on November 14, told councillors: “What we did was look at the causes of the shootings and it mainly came down to (that) we have got what we see as a gang or two in Wycombe.

“We need to tackle the causes of it, it's not too dissimilar to terrorism and radicalism. We have to see why it is happening. We are actually leading in the force on this approach.”

There was also a shooting about 18 months ago which left an innocent teenage boy seriously injured and led to the case being featured on BBC's Crimewatch programme.

Asked about providing more detailed data on the gangs and where they are based by Labour Councillor Khalil Ahmed, Supt. Houalla said currently it is not possible to provide this kind of information, while investigations are ongoing.

According to official statistics published on the Police.Uk website, there have been 315 violent crimes recorded within one mile of High Wycombe this year up until the latest recorded figures in September.

However, Supt. Houalla was reporting to councillors on the fact that crime has fallen in the Wycombe area in the past year.

Earlier this year a rap song urging Wycombe’s youngsters to stay away from a life in gangs became an internet sensation.

The video for Eye For An Eye - filmed around the town centre and notorious gang hot-spots –was put together by Fulham-based DJ Larry Lomotey who heard about the gang-violence in Wycombe and decided to make a stand.

He told the BFP: “Even if it stops just one person from getting into a situation where they feel like they need to use violence or they sit down and talk to someone about a situation, this project has done its job.”

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