Local News

Burglars Target Sittingbourne Businesses

Burglars target Sittingbourne businesses

Business owners are being reminded to ensure valuable items are securely stored if being left overnight, following a number of burglaries on a Sittingbourne trading estate.

Kent Police received reports of three break-ins to commercial premises on the Trinity Trading Estate at around 2am on Wednesday (18th December) morning. Computer equipment, cash and vehicle keys were reported stolen.

Sergeant Jason Hedges, of the Swale Community Safety Unit, told SFM News: "Some businesses cease trading over the Christmas period and thieves can see this as an opportunity to target the premises. We would like to remind business owners to review their safety measures and to ensure large amounts of money or valuables are either securely stored or are not left on-site. Keep the building secure and consider installing CCTV, alarms and security lighting. Any business owners who have concerns about their security can contact our Community Safety Unit for advice on staying safe."

Anyone with any information regarding these incidents is asked to call Kent Police on 01795 419 119 quoting crime reference 46/240261/19. Alternatively, they can contact the independent charity Crimestoppers free and anonymously by calling 0800 555 111 or by using the anonymous online form at: crimestoppers-uk.org.


Sittingbourne Fly Tipping Culprit Brought To Justice

Sittingbourne Fly Tipping Culprit Brought To Justice

A man has been prosecuted after garage parts, wood, a hanging basket, roofing felt, broken up cabinets, furniture items and cardboard boxes were dumped along Ridham Dock Road last year.

Officers from Swale Borough Council investigated the fly tipping and were able to trace the waste to a Chatham resident. When she was visited by the council, she discovered she had been the unsuspecting victim of an unlawful waste carrier.

The woman had enlisted the help of RM House and Rubbish Clearance via Facebook to clear her home of unwanted items. She admitted she had no idea the person driving did not hold the correct license to dispose of her waste.

The items were collected by a man driving a distinctive yellow flatbed truck owned by Mr Ryan Millard, aged 24, from Hale in Chatham.

Mr Millard claimed he shared the truck with a friend and had no knowledge of it being used for illegal fly tipping. When asked however, he was unable to provide any personal details that would lead investigators to his friend.

Despite his account, as the person with control of the truck, Mr Millard is deemed to be responsible for the crime and was taken to court.

Mr Millard attended Medway Magistrates Court on Thursday 21st November and plead guilty to knowingly causing the illegal deposit of waste, receiving a £533 fine with £53 victim surcharge and £205 court costs.

A council spokesperson told SFM News: "Fly tipping is a criminal offence and something we take very seriously, so we're happy with the outcome of this case. Anybody caught having any involvement in the disposal of waste without a valid waste carrier license will be prosecuted. We do want to remind people that anybody disposing of household items has to have a valid waste carrier licence. If you don't check, and your waste is dumped, you could be prosecuted. Always ask for a receipt and be cautious of waste collectors who will only accept cash. Not only is fly tipping unsafe, but it is a risk to wildlife, and it makes the borough an eyesore for everybody who lives here."

To check whether someone is licenced to carry waste visit the Environment Agency website or call 03708 506506.

For more information about fly-tipping, and what the council is doing to tackle it, visit: www.swale.gov.uk/fly-tipping.

Witnesses Sought Following High Street Assault

Witnesses Sought Following High Street Assault

Witnesses are being sought following reports of two men being assaulted in a car park near Sittingbourne High Street.

At round 7.50pm on Monday 4th November, the two victims were walking along the High Street when a group of young people began to follow them. They were reportedly followed through the churchyard of St Michael's Church and into the car park in St Michael's Road. In the car park, both victims were allegedly punched to the ground and assaulted as they tried to protect themselves. Both men were taken to a hospital with injuries. The same group of youths were also reported to be throwing stones at a shop in the High Street at a similar time.

Officer in charge of the investigation, PC Richard Cousins told SFM News: "we believe there may be witnesses to this incident, however, they have not yet come forward. Anyone who may have witnessed the assault, or has any information, is urged to call Kent Police on 01795 419 119 quoting crime reference 46/212024/19. Alternatively, you can contact the independent charity Crimestoppers free and anonymously by calling 0800 555 111, or you can use the anonymous online form at crimestoppers-uk.org.


Police Witness Appeal After High Street Assault

Police Witness Appeal After High Street Assault

Witnesses are being sought by officers after a man was assaulted in Sittingbourne High Street ast week.

At around 7.30pm last Thursday (24th October) it was reported that the victim was walking along the High Street from the direction of East Street. As he walked past the graveyard, he was approached by a group of young men. One of the group jumped on the victim and they both fell to the floor. Whilst on the ground the victim was allegedly kicked in the face and hit in the head with a traffic cone sustaining facial injuries.

Following enquiries, a 20-year-old man from Sittingbourne was arrested on suspicion of attempting to cause grievous bodily harm. He was later released pending further investigations.

Officer in charge of the investigation, PC Elliot told SFM News: "We believe there may be multiple witnesses to this incident, however, they have not yet come forward".

Anyone who may have witnessed the assault, or has any information, is urged to call Kent Police on 01795 419 119 quoting crime reference 46/204776/19. Alternatively, you can contact the independent charity Kent Crimestoppers free and anonymously by calling 0800 555 111 or using their anonymous online form at: Crimestoppers-uk.org.

Swale Youngsters Attend Bike Safety Event

Swale Youngsters Attend Bike Safety Event

A group of young people recently attended a thought provoking afternoon which discussed road safety and the consequences of carelessly riding bikes.

The Road Safety Experience, in Rochester, hosted the teenagers from both Swale and Tonbridge and Malling on Thursday (24th October).

The event was arranged by Kent Police Youth Engagement Officers, with support provided by Kent Fire and Rescue Service, Kent County Council, Medway Council and Community Cycleworks, a not for profit organisation that promotes safe cycling amongst young people.

They reviewed a scene that has been constructed to show a collision between a bike and a car.

They then had the opportunity to speak with officers, take part in group exercises and view equipment Kent Fire and Rescue Service often used at the scene of serious collisions.

Ian Henderson, a Youth Engagement Officer for Kent Police, told SFM News: "The aim of the afternoon was to be thought-provoking, interactive and fun but we did not ignore the hard-hitting points and reality of road safety we wanted to get across. Cycling is an excellent sport but, like many things, we do sometimes take it for granted and ignore some of the risks that come with it. We hope that by sharing our experiences with young people, we can promote safer riding and prevent a serious injury."

Cllr Phil Filmer, Portfolio Holder for Frontline Services at Medway Council, told SFM News: "We are pleased to have worked closely with our partner agencies on this intervention and we will continue to work closely with schools across Medway to help teach pupils the importance of road safety. We also deliver bikeability training to schools which includes advice on how to plan journeys on busy roads. As daylight hours draw in I would like to encourage cyclists, pedestrians, motorcyclists and other road users to make sure they are visible by wearing bright and reflective clothing. We all have a responsibility to help keep Medway's roads safe."

Masked Burglars Target Sittingbourne Home

Masked Burglars Targeted Sittingbourne Home

Masked burglars who targeted a Sittingbourne home are being sought by investigators.

The incident is reported to have happened at around 8:00pm on Friday (25th October), at a private address in South Green.

Three men entered the premises holding screwdrivers and threatened the two occupants before leaving with a quantity of cash and jewellery.

The men are described as wearing balaclavas, dark jackets and jeans. One of them is said to have spoken with a foreign accent.

Anyone who has information that may assist the investigation or who has CCTV or dash cam footage from the area around the time of the incident, is asked to call Kent Police on 01622 604 100, quoting crime reference 46/205511/19.

Alternatively you can call Kent Crimestoppers, free and anonymously on 0800 555 111 or complete an online form at: www.crimestoppers-uk.org.



Witnesses Sought Following M2 Fatal Collision

Witnesses Sought Following M2 Fatal Collision

Kent Police are appealing for witnesses following a fatal collision on the M2 near Medway earlier this afternoon (Tuesday 8th October).

Officers were called to the coastbound carriageway of the motorway, near the services between junctions 4 (Gillingham) and 5 (Sittingbourne), at 1.36pm where a collision had taken place involving a white lorry and grey BMW estate car.

A man aged in his 20s sustained fatal injuries and died at the scene. His next of kin have been informed.

A 22-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of death by dangerous driving and was taken into police custody.

An investigation into the collision is being carried out by the Serious Collision Investigation Unit (SCIU) who are asking drivers to check their dashcams for anything which might assist their enquiries.

People who witnessed the collision are asked to call the SCIU appeal line on 01622 798538 quoting RY/FM/108/19.


Major Power Cut Hits Hundreds Of Homes

Major Power Cut Hits Hundreds Of Homes

Hundreds of homes and businesses in the Sittingbourne area are still without power after a fault, pinpointed to a pole near the junction of Panteny Lane and School Lane in Bapchild.

Initially, 3,906 homes and businesses across the town were affected shortly after 9.00am this morning (Thursday 3rd October) and by 10.30am more than 300 customers were still without power.

A UK Power Networks spokesman told SFM News that: "Engineers are working as quickly as possible to restore electricity supplies to 318 customers in Sittingbourne. We understand how difficult it is being without electricity and we are sorry for any inconvenience caused. We ae now estimating that we will have power back on between 4.30pm and 5.30pm this afternoon. Some properties may be back on sooner than others".

Stay tuned to 106.9 SFM for the latest.

Sittingbourne Man Jailed For Faversham Park Assault

Sittingbourne Man Jailed For Faversham Park Assault

A Sittingbourne man has been jailed after he assaulted a teenager in a park in Faversham last September.

Shane Scamp, of Wild Ash Croft, kicked the boy in the face because he thought he was laughing at his friend. The 21-year old was arrested and charged with grievous bodily harm with intent. He pleaded guilty to the charge at Maidstone Crown Court and was sentenced to three and a half year's imprisonment.

The court heard that around 7.00pm on Thursday 13th September 2018, two teenagers were socialising in the recreation ground near Park Road in Faversham. They were sitting on the grass when they noticed two men near the skate park area being rowdy and drinking from a bottle. One of the men, Scamp, approached the teenagers accusing them of laughing at his friend. Whilst he was still sitting Scamp struck one of the teenagers in the face with the back of his hand. He then kicked him in the face causing him to fall backwards and lose consciousness for a few minutes.

The police were called and witnesses were able to identify Scamp as the offender. He fled the scene and officers pursued him on foot, however, he was handed a bicycle by an unknown youth and was able to escape. Further investigation confirmed Scamp had carried out the assault and eight days later officers arrested him at his home address.

The victim had sustained a fractured cheekbone which required surgery. Scamp was found guilty of causing grievous bodily harm with intent and was sentenced to three years and six months at Maidstone Crown Court on Monday 23 September 2019.

Investigating officer, Police Constable Luke Challinger, told SFM News "The victim of this case, who was significantly younger than the offender, was socialising with his friend and Scamp viciously kicked him in the face for no reason causing serious injury. His violent behaviour during this unprovoked attack is unacceptable and a custodial sentence is entirely justified."


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