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New West police: Be sure to call 911 in an emergency

Several recent unreported – or late reported – crimes prompt reminder from New Westminster Police Department to call 911
Justine Thom 2 - Contributed
Sgt. Justine Thom took to social media on July 14 to remind folks of the importance of calling 911 if they are witnessing or the victim of serious incidents.

The New Westminster Police Department is reminding citizens of calling 911 if they’re the victim of crime.

In a video posted to social media on July 14, NWPD spokesperson Sgt. Justine Thom said the police department has become aware of several serious incidents that are either not being reported to police or are being late reported to police.

“If you are an individual that has been kicked at, has had a weapon brandished to them, has been spit on, has been assaulted in any way, you need to call 911 immediately,” she said. “In addition to that, if you are witnessing a crime in progress or you are unsure if a person is alive, you need to call 911 immediately.”

Thom outlined several reasons for reporting these kinds of emergencies to 911.

“It allows us to better serve this community. It allows us to serve the public. It also increases our chances of saving lives, as well as apprehending suspects,” she said. “On top of that, it allows us to reallocate resources in areas where we are seeing an increase in that type of crime.”

In a follow-up email to the Record, Thom said the police department has learned of several recent incidents of violent crime that were not reported to police immediately through 911.

“In saying that, this is always an issue,” she said. “While there could be many reasons for this, we want to impress upon residents that calling our non-emergency line the next day or sharing their experience to us through social media later the same day simply doesn’t allow for us to serve these people to our best ability. Our officers are far more likely to apprehend suspects, save lives, or solve crimes when we’re notified immediately through 911.”