“Residents in Holbeach can rest assured their safety is our priority.”
That is the message from Inspector Jim Tyner after a complaint about police response to an attack in Carter’s Park was withdrawn.
Last month, security guard Wayne Hodgins (50) was hit in the face with a football, beaten to the ground, kicked and left unconscious after asking a group of youths to leave the park because it was lock-up time.
Park manager Tony Walker and his wife, Loraine, made an official complaint to police because they claim they waited 40 minutes at the gates for officers to answer a 999 call before finally giving up and going home.
Mrs Walker said: “We have spoken to a sergeant from Boston who came down to sort out the night of the assault and the lack of response.
“What happened was an armed response police car came from Boston as it was the only car available.
“It did take over 40 minutes to get here as it was during a shift change.
“As someone told us the next day, and we have now found to be true, a police car drove down Park Road and stopped over by Holbeach warehouse. No police officer got out or came over to the park.
“What we didn’t know and the sergeant told us on Sunday when he came down was that the police officer in the car contacted the control room by radio to ask where the caller was. This is where the mistake was made.
“Instead of the control room phoning Tony who was the caller, asking where the police were, the control room rang the wife of the security guard who had left the scene with Wayne.
“When the police officers were told the caller had left the scene they also left.
“As our complaint was a failure or neglect of a police officer in his duty, we decided that it wasn’t his fault but the fault of the control operator, so we decided not to proceed with the complaint.”
Insp Tyner visited Mr and Mrs Walker on Friday to reassure them the safety of Holbeach residents was a priority.
He said: “When I came to Spalding in January I immediately based an emergency response unit in Holbeach so police could be there 24/7, covering the town and the Suttons.
“There are challenges for us with 280 square miles to patrol across South Holland.
“I am the first to admit that there are times when our resources are stretched to the limit.
“But we try to address this with the support of our volunteer Special Constables in areas that cause us most concern.
“The safety of residents in Holbeach is a priority.”