Scheme gives public chance to solve crime

Police outside student accommodation in Stanhope Road, Portsmouth on Friday Picture Ben Fishwick

Man arrested in Portsmouth explosives probe at Stanhope Road student block is released by police

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MEMBERS of the public can help solve shoplifting crimes with a new scheme.

Hampshire Constabulary is joining forces with The Southern Co-operative, in Portsmouth, to launch Facewatch.

It is a free online crime reporting system for businesses and the police.

It will allow people to identify suspects for crimes committed in 25 Southern Co-op stores across the area.

The system comes in a smartphone app.

People can view images on their smartphone or a computer and name any people they recognise.

The images are uploaded directly by the police on to the site and are searchable when the user inputs their postcode or uses the GPS function.

If they recognise someone from an image, they can enter their name which will be sent anonymously to the police.

Gareth Lewis, of The Southern Co-operative, said: ‘This unique combination of police, public and local businesses using smartphones to combat crime is an exciting concept and one that deserves to be fully supported.’

Inspector Claire Taylor said: ‘It allows members of the public to become involved in identifying offenders to make their communities safer places to live, work and visit.’