Sen. Sgt Chris Martin talks finding Cleo, car thefts and the Police Legacy ball

Sen. Sgt Chris MartinGeraldton Guardian
Geraldton Police Station officer in charge Senior Sergeant Chris Martin.
Camera IconGeraldton Police Station officer in charge Senior Sergeant Chris Martin. Credit: Geraldton Guardian

First, I want to say a big thank you to all those people from Geraldton and the wider Mid West who made a special effort to help police find Cleo Smith.

Whether you made stickers, hung up posters, shared Facebook posts or contacted Crimestoppers — the community response was phenomenal.

It shows that when times are tough people in regional WA really come together.

It really does pull on the heartstrings this story. Still thinking about it now I get a bit emotional, having a couple of kids myself.

Taskforce Rodia and the Carnarvon police did a fantastic job. Having taken part in similar searches, I know how much effort gets put into these operations.

When we do find missing people alive and well it really is a heart-warming feeling.

We put a lot of resources into getting good results and it’s always great to see the efforts you put in at the start paying dividends at the end.

Being part of the police force is a fantastic job. If it’s something that interests you the WA Police Force is in the middle of a recruitment drive. We are looking to add hundreds of officers to the agency and we are recruiting on all fronts. Head to www.letsjoinforces.wa.gov.au for more information.

While we’ve lately seen an overall reduction in local crime — probably because of the cooler weather — there has been an increase in offenders stealing property from parked cars.

It’s particularly prominent in the CBD, as far up as the museum and all the way back to Orana Cinemas. A lot of the thefts are happening to cars parking on the street overnight.

You’re probably not going to be shocked to hear, but a number of the cars were open or had windows left open with their valuables inside.

If you’re leaving your car in the CBD because you’ve had a night out, my advice would be, if you can, to move it off the street and put it in a car park or get a designated driver to pick it up for you.

We’ve got great CCTV in Geraldton but it doesn’t cover all areas.

If you have to, park your car in front of the police station.

Last, thanks to everyone who came along to the Geraldton Police Legacy Ball last weekend. We raised more than $10,000 for Police Legacy, a charity which supports families of police officers who have passed away.

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