PUBLISHED: 10:38 08 October 2008 | UPDATED: 22:25 15 June 2010
It was discussed at a recent meeting of the Axe Valley Local Action Group, which last met at Seaton, that there continues to be negative reporting by your newspaper in respect of some crime and disorder issues. The group felt that to report in this manne
It was discussed at a recent meeting of the Axe Valley Local Action Group, which last met at Seaton, that there continues to be negative reporting by your newspaper in respect of some crime and disorder issues. The group felt that to report in this manner, where often facts are unfounded or are blown up out of all proportion, will undoubtedly raise the fear of crime in the local community when, in fact, the incidents of crime, disorder and anti-social behaviour are relatively low and isolated. I must add that your newspaper is not the only one currently guilty of such reporting. I attend all the meetings of the Community Safety Local Action Groups across East Devon and the very negative reporting by the local press in the manner described above is frequently highlighted, as it is a cause for concern by the agencies trying to deal with the issues. East Devon is a very safe place to live, has been so for many years and will continue to be so. Gerry MooreCommunity Safety and Anti Social Behaviour Co-ordinator HERALD editor Belinda Bennett responds: While reducing the fear of crime is a priority for the police, it is the role of the Press to raise awareness. If bad things happen, we report them.I always try to encourage the police to pass on positive news.Crime is a community problem and the police, along with any other recognised agency, including the Community Safety Partnership, do not 'own' it. Crime is a feature of rural life, albeit not a major feature, and its impact is keenly felt by victims - hence it is part of our job to report it.Mr Moore has not specified which crime reports he refers to when accusing the Herald of blowing them up out of all proportion.As a responsible publisher, this newspaper always seeks to stick to the facts.The Herald invites the views of readers on the content of Mr Moore's letter and our response.
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