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Police awarded £250k to launch unmanned aerial vehicles. 

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Surrey and Sussex Police have been awarded almost £250,000 to expand a trial to see how the use of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) could help keep people safe and assist with the investigation of crime.

The Home Office has awarded the forces the money from the Police Innovation Fund, which rewards creative, collaborative and cost-saving projects aimed at transforming policing.

The funding will be used to purchase five more UAVs to use in Surrey and Sussex to see how they can be used to improve policing across the country.

UAVs can be used to gather evidence from the air, such as at the scene of road, rail or air crashes, can help with searches for missing or wanted people and can help to capture a broad picture of activities on the ground, such as the spread of flooding, the movement of people during public disorder or events at an armed incident.

A trial of a UAV at Gatwick Airport last year showed that the equipment could provide a faster, safer and cheaper alternative to officer-led patrols in some circumstances.

They can cover a distance seven times quicker than officers on foot and can be used in conditions where it is unsafe for helicopters to fly or officers to go, such as smoky environments or when hazardous chemicals or materials have been spilled.

With the new UAVs, officers will study the most effective ways the equipment can be used and draw up guides for other forces about their use in different conditions and environments.

They will also help develop a training package for officers so that they can be accredited to use the equipment and assess whether more forces should invest in the technology.

Assistant Chief Constable Steve Barry, whose portfolio includes the joint Operations department for Surrey and Sussex Police, said: “Some of the benefits have already been demonstrated during the relatively short period that we have had the equipment for.

“They can go to places where it is unsafe for officers and can gather evidence quickly that could be vital in an investigation or that could help us deploy officers to the right places at the right time, potentially allowing us to make life-saving decisions.

“This is not about providing cut-price policing but about using technology to enhance the way we work. UAVs could prove extremely useful during a range of incidents and I am delighted the extra funding from the Home Office means we can explore more closely exactly what they can do.”

Policing Minister Mike Penning said: “This year’s successful bid have once again demonstrated how well police forces can work together to come up with forward-thinking, creative and original projects.

“Crime has fallen by more than a fifth under this Government. By working together, utilising modern technology and embracing new ideas, the police can do their job even better.

“While we are not suggesting that UAVs should replace police officers in everyday situations, early findings of this work suggests new technology could transform the police’s response in certain difficult or dangerous situations.

“This year’s successful bids to the Police Innovation Fund will build upon the work we have already funded to further improve efficiency, save forces money and ultimately provide greater value and a better service for the taxpayer.”

The Police Innovation Fund was launched last year. Every force in England and Wales received a share of £50 million in 2014/15. Forces estimate projects supported to date by the Police Innovation Fund will have saved taxpayers almost £250m once they have been up and running for five years.

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3 year old attacked by three men with acid at retail park

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A three-year old boy has been seriously injured in what police have described as a deliberate targeted attack at Hone Bargains on Shrub Hill Retail Park at around 2.15pm on Saturday.

The boy suffered serious burns to his arms and face

He is being treated for his injuries in hospital.

West Mercia Police have released images of three men they would like to speak to about the incident

Chief Superintendent Mark Travis said: “At this time we are treating this as a deliberate attack on a three-year-old boy.

“The incident will rightly shock the local community and I would like to reassure local people that we are carrying out a thorough investigation to identify those responsible.

“At this time, the motive for the attack is unclear. Officers are working hard to establish exactly what happened and what the substance involved was.”

He said that the three men pictured in the images from the store “may have information vital to our investigation.

“I am sure someone will recognise them and I would urge anyone with information to contact us as a matter of urgency.”

A 39-year-old man from Wolverhampton has been arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to commit grievous bodily harm and remains in police custody.

West Mercia Police said anyone with information should call 999 or the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

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Families warned to drain paddling pools to stop vampire horseflies breeding after heatwave

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Vampire like horseflies are breeding like never before as Britain enjoys the longest heatwave in 40 years.

They are breeding like never before with the aide of garden pools and the heatwave.

The NHS is now advising members of the public to drain standing water to stop insects multiplying.

These insects love water and the heat will only help them increase in numbers.

The problem comes when they bite you, more that 9000 people have called the NHS helpline 111 to report these insects bites.

They leave a painful bite which often requires antibiotics if they become infected.

According to Dr Nick Scriven, president of the Society for Acute Medicine, bites from vampire horseflies can be especially sore.

He told the BBC: “They actually give one of the nastier bites, because they take a chunk out of you.”

“They can be very painful, and can take a while to heal, and as result can get infected and need antibiotics.”

Paddling pools are prime breeding grounds for these bugs.

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Thug attempted to kill cop jailed for less than 2 years… It should be life

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We know you should have faced attempted murder charges, we know your laughing at your sentence. Because you attempted to kill a cop to avoid arrest because you are an idiot.

But be assured when that day comes that you need the police to save your life they won’t hold it against you.

In the early hours of Wednesday, 13 June officers chased a suspected stolen vehicle along the A22 Godstone Bypass, after it had been linked to a burglary in Oxted eight days before.

Officers managed to box the vehicle in (using a manoeuvre known as Tactical Pursuit and Containment TPAC).

During the TPAC, the vehicle swerved into one of the police cars, trying to force it off of the road. Officers managed to box the vehicle in, and it then tried to reverse away from officers, so officers got out of their vehicles and tried to remove the driver (Kidd), this included smashing the windows of the vehicle.

In car video footage shows Sergeant Chris Schultze, of the Area Patrol Team, was on the passenger’s side of the vehicle, but then started to go towards the driver’s side to assist officers.

As Sergeant Schultze was making his way to the driver’s side, Kidd drove forward in what appeared to be a deliberate attempt to knock the officers over the barrier, as seen in the footage.

Sergeant Schultze was initially treated at hospital for his injuries, and was later discharged and is now back on duty

The three occupants (two 19-year-old men from Sutton and a 17-year-old man) were arrested for various offences including burglary, theft of a motor vehicle, and failure to stop.

Ramone Kidd, 19-years-old, of Prince of Wales Road in Sutton, South London appeared at Guildford Crown Court yesterday (12 July), and pleaded guilty to the following:

Dangerous driving

Driving whilst disqualified

Driving whilst unfit through drink / drugs

Actual bodily harm (ABH)

Kidd was sentenced to 23 months in prison, and has had his licence disqualified for three years.

In court, His Honour Judge Moss commended all the officers involved in the initial pursuit and the investigation team.

Detective Sergeant Kerry Akehurst, from the Criminal Investigation Department said: “I would firstly like to echo what His Honour Judge Moss said around the professionalism of the officers involved in the incident.

“The role of a police officer is to protect the public, and each day officers put their lives at risk to apprehend suspects and protect the public. During this particular incident, officers attempted to stop the vehicle, and in doing so, three officers received injuries and four police vehicles sustained damage.”

The 19 and 17 year-old men have been released under investigation for the burglary offences whilst enquiries continue.

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