Clarence Valley police see social media as a valuable policing tool.
Clarence Valley police see social media as a valuable policing tool.

Police closing in on the net

THE Coffs Clarence Local Area Command has entered the world of social media with the recent launch of a Facebook page dedicated to policing in the area.

The Coffs Clarence LAC - NSW Police force Facebook page breaks new ground by giving residents unprecedented access to media releases, details of local events and crime prevention tips related to the area.

The page is one of more than 80 across the state rolled out as part of Project Eyewatch.

Inspector Murray Gillet, who is in charge of Clarence Valley police, said it was early days for local police on Facebook but could see it being a valuable addition to policing in the area.

He described it as the modernising of the Neighbourhood Watch model which, aside from successful committees in Maclean and Yamba, had died off in the area.

While all police in the area could view the site, he said, one officer in the Coffs Clarence command would be in charge of its management.

According to the NSW Police website, Eyewatch has already been an outstanding success with more than 60,000 people connected to their local police via Facebook.

"You can ask you local police questions, seek advice or share crime and safety information. Police use Eyewatch to let people know about local crimes and post photos of missing or wanted people."

"The NSW Police Force aims to protect the community and we recognise the impact social media has had on spreading knowledge of crime, crime prevention, and police activities.

"We also value feedback from the public regarding our presence on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and the NSW Police Force website."