Heely MP Louise Haigh has urged Teresa May to give more protection to UK police forces in pursuing moped criminals.
Motorcycle related crime has soared
She stated that “Crimes involving mopeds and bikes has soared across the country in recent years” and that despite the continuous under funding of the police force, the ‘least [she] could do is to change the law to protect police officers” allowing them to effectively pursue criminals on motorbikes.
This news came swiftly after Ben Miskell, Sheffield’s Councillor was attacked after surgery this July by a masked biker. The identity of the moped rider still remains unknown.
A spokesman for the Metropolitan Police said: “There has been a noticeable increase in the theft of scooters, motorcycles and mopeds and their use in the commission of theft snatch offences over the last five years.” Many pedestrians have reported having their mobile phones and other personal belongings such as cards, purses and bags snatched right from their hands by thieves riding mopeds. Last year alone, over 50,000 scooter crimes were committed. The MET have urged pedestrians to be more aware of their surroundings whilst out in public and to keep valuables out of sight from potential thieves.
The current law
Currently, the law offers very little protection for British bobby’s, effectively rending them powerless to tackle the growing issue of moped gangs. With many forces having an outright blanket ban on chasing moped criminals, Louise Haigh states that it’s not possible for the police to protect the public when they can not even defend themselves.
For the vast majority of police units, the decision is left up to the individual Police and Crime Commissioner of the area. However, with some much red tape and potential liability repercussions, many opt to avoid tackling the issue completely.
Theresa May’s response
Theresa May, ultimately offering no solution, suggested that whilst no police force should have a blanket ban in force, it is up to the chief constable in the area to make the decision on how officers respond to moped crime.