Hundreds of burglars, robbers and sex offenders are to be hunted down and arrested as part of a major 100-day blitz aimed at restoring public trust in the police.
Sir Mark Rowley, the Met Commissioner, has vowed to increase efforts to catch target offenders and has warned the courts to expect a surge in prosecutions.
Setting out his vision for the future of the Metropolitan Police, Sir Mark said it was time for the force to “get the basics right” and that included bearing down on those criminals who caused misery in their communities.
As part of his plan to turn round the beleaguered force, Sir Mark said his officers would attend every single burglary in the capital.
He said: “We're never going to turn up to every single crime, and the public understand that, but something as severe as burglary needs a proper policing response. It's too serious an intrusion not to have somebody turn up.”
Improving neighbourhood policing
Sir Mark said during his first 100 days in office he had several key objectives which included improving neighbourhood policing, tackling drug gangs, targeting fraudsters and bearing down on violent offenders.
As part of that work his front-line officers are to begin hunting down some of the 14,000 known criminals who are at large on London’s streets.
Sir Mark said: “We will be bearing down on that and bringing down the number of people outstanding and wanted for serious offences because we think we can get that number down by well into three figures.”
Commander Alexis Boon, one of his senior officers, said there was a cohort of people who committed the most crime who would be targeted using every tool at the Met’s disposal.
He said: "You will see hundreds of arrests over this 100 days of wanted subjects, people that we're going to bring to justice."
He added: “We're focusing particularly on offenders who commit violence against women and girls.
"So those that are wanted for rape, those that are wanted for breach of orders, those that are out there for stalking, sex offenders.
"And then finally, in that wanted cohort of offenders we're going to go after the burglars, the robbers, the people with weapons.”
Restore public confidence
Sir Mark, who was appointed Commissioner following the resignation of Dame Cressida Dick, said he wanted to restore public confidence in the police and also root out those who corrupted the Met with racism and misogyny.
The Met has been rocked by a string of scandals including the murder of Sarah Everard, 33, in March 2021 by a serving officer, the Charing Cross racism storm in Feb 2022 where police officers were caught joking about rape and beating their wives, and the jailing of two officers in May 2022 for taking photographs of two female murder victims.
But he said public confidence in the country’s biggest force had been going down for years and the problems were more “systemic” than the recent scandals.
He said: “My mission is about more trust, less crime and high standards. That is what everything needs to revolve around, those three thoughts. Building the trust in communities, tackling crime and high standards, and that is what we are going to do.”
Asked whether he would ban officers taking the knee, Sir Mark said he wanted his officers to police “without fear or favour”.
He said: “Whether a cause has 99 per cent public support or one per cent public support, police should remain neutral in how they police it. We should not show any allegiance to causes, however noble or not.”