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Net gains by YouTube cops

FORGET bobbies on the beat... bobbies are now on the 'net too.

FORGET bobbies on the beat... bobbies are now on the 'net too.

Police are hoping to reach young people by using the popular video website YouTube.

Nine videos have been posted showing current campaigns and a 'behind the scenes' look at police air operations.

The force decided to target young people who spend more time on video sharing and social networking sites compared, to time spent reading or watching traditional media.

Online footage shows views from the force helicopter and operations in action.

Viewers see action scenes including, the helicopter helping to stop a dangerous motorbike rider, catch an offender trying to escape by motorbike and stopping two stolen cars.

Meanwhile Crime prevention videos give information on helping to guard against becoming a victim of car key burglary.

And the campaign video Bestmates, was made by students telling other students how to stay safe on a night out.

Head of Press Chief Inspector Mark Payne said police were keen to engage with and inform youngsters: "Young people are using sites like YouTube on a regular basis and we feel it is essential for us to have a presence on there to help promote how we police our communities and to distribute crime prevention advice," he said.

"This is just one of the moves we are making towards having a greater presence on popular internet sites. We are also looking at having a presence on social networking sites as yet another way to engage with young people."

The force site can be found at with new videos uploaded every fortnight.

Detective Chief Inspector Neil Thomas, Solihull crime manager, said: "We really support this initiative, and it will be an excellent way for us as police to link in with young people who use YouTube.

"We hope that the videos that the police will be putting on there will be really effective in making young people aware of crime reduction and other issues that may affect them, across Solihull and the wider West Midlands."



Cathrina Hulse
Multimedia Journalist
Annette Belcher
Multimedia Journalist
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