Langham votes no to hiring its own police force

By Celine Grimard/CKOM News Staff
September 21, 2017 - 1:04pm

People in Langham have voted to stick with the status quo when it comes to policing.

A non-binding plebiscite was held Wednesday asking whether the town ought to join in a regional police force with the Town of Dalmeny.

Dalmeny currently has its own police service with three full-time officers. The plan put forward in the plebiscite called for Langham to add an additional three officers.

Overall, 406 people voted no, while 38 voted yes. Around 1,300 people live in Langham.

Langham resident Shannon Lewis said she felt the existing police presence in town was adequate, and that the community doesn’t have much crime.

“You’re not always watching the streets to watch them drive by. So, they are here, its just you might blink and not see them,” Lewis said.

Currently Langham contracts with the Warman RCMP detachment for police service.

Resident Curtis Penner said he felt RCMP were getting the job done.

“They have the tools to do the job fully. We’ve had some experiences in the past, say with municipal police, that have been perhaps less than positive at times,” Penner said.

Business owner Trevor Read said he voted for the town to get its own police because he wanted to see a beefed-up response to petty crimes like vandalism.

“We’ve lived in this area for 15 years, in town for 8 and it’s a very slow response time and very little presence,” he said.

Crime statistics posted to the Town of Langham website showed 57 incidents in 2015. Of those, 48 were either mischief or thefts from vehicles.

A move to its own police force would have cost Langham ratepayers an extra $460 a year on their property taxes.

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