‘Five cops off perfect’: MP

Jasper Hodges, Christine Macintosh and Jack Macintosh.
Jasper Hodges, Christine Macintosh and Jack Macintosh.

STATE MP Daryl Maguire claims the addition of five more police officers would “do the trick” for the Wagga Local Area Command. 

It comes after The Daily Advertiser reported police stations in the Riverina’s smaller towns have been under-resourced to cope with the demands of residents. 

While Mr Maguire described the current allocation as a “record-high”, he believes five more rank and file officers would complete the front line.

“We believe another five would do the trick,” he said.

“This Local Area Command has a record number of police, but we’re continuing to work for more.

“We have worked very hard to get our numbers up to the NSW Police Association’s expectations.”

The Wagga LAC employed 147 staff as of June this year, but Mr Maguire claims the number “fluctuates significantly” with leave, transfers and entitlements. 

From what I’ve gathered, there's a shortage of police on the night shift because they're all chasing the day shift work.

Christine Macintosh

Springvale’s Christine Macintosh, whose pleas for help reportedly went unanswered by Wagga police in May, suspects a shortfall in staffing may lie with the evening shift. 

“From what I’ve gathered, there's a shortage of police on the night shift because they're all chasing the day shift work,” she said.

“It's a bit hard to tell them to go out and do their job, when they don't have the resources to do it. 

“Just because everybody's at home sleeping, doesn't mean the crooks are.

“When thieves were on our property, the phone call was made twice to Wagga police but nobody came.”

The impending restructure of NSW Police’s regional commands will look to stir up current staffing allocations across the state. 

Police Minister Troy Grant was confident the overhaul will be a win for regional areas. 

“The re-engineering of the NSW Police Force (will) enhance the executive structure and ensure more officers are on the ground where they are needed,” Mr Grant said.

“Communities across the state will therefore reap the safety benefits.”

It is not yet known which Local Area Commands will be merged or cut.