Undercover police to tail taxis in bid to stop attacks on drivers

UNDERCOVER police will tail taxis in a bid to stop attacks on drivers, the Evening Times can reveal today.

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plain clothes officers will tail taxis
plain clothes officers will tail taxis

Plain clothes officers have been deployed over fears that thieves are targeting cabbies late at night.

Chief Inspector Joe McKerns, area commander for Maryhill, Kelvin and Canal, said the plan was launched after concerns about drivers' safety.

It comes a week after Andy Burns, a 44-year-old taxi driver, and Jean Evans, a 68-year-old mother of three, were assaulted in Cambuslang.

As reported by the Evening Times, a 33-year-old man was arrested in connection the incident last Friday evening.

Mr McKerns explained that unmarked police cars will follow taxis after they pick up hires to ensure drivers and passengers stay safe.

He told the Evening Times: "We have seen a slight increase in robberies and attempted robberies on taxi drivers during the last three months.

"The majority have been taking place late at night, or in the early hours of the morning, in the north of Glasgow.

"We haved launched a scheme where plain-clothed officers, in an unmarked police car, will follow the taxi for a short time in a bid to reassure the driver.

"Sometimes, officers will use marked police vehicles, as it will give the driver the opportunity to flag down officers and alert them to any concerns. Marked cars should also deter anyone from assaulting or robbing taxi drivers."

The action plan was developed by Mr McKerns and Chief Inspector Simon Midgley, area commander for Springburn.

Police said attacks on cabbies was an "emerging problem" but they are committed to ensuring the safety of both drivers and passengers.

Mr McKerns added: "I believe this scheme can have a real impact on keeping people safe, without pulling resources away from elsewhere.

"These are officers who would already be out on patrol in these areas.

"Ultimately, police want to help protect those taxi drivers who work late at night."

rebecca.gray@eveningtimes.co.uk

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