The West Shore RCMP detachment is getting four officers for a new bicycle and special projects unit to deal with a spike in the crime rate.
The City of Langford made the announcement on June 23 that the new officers will allow for the creation of the full-time unit that will focus on community trails, parks and downtown core. The bicycle and special projects unit will also provide coverage for special events and target “trouble spots” within Langford, specifically the city’s trails and parks.
The announcement comes after three sexual assaults in three years along the Galloping Goose trail and nearby parks. Last year, a young woman was attacked from behind by a man on his bike and a year earlier, a 23-year-old woman was knocked unconscious on the north side of Glen Lake while out running.
The city said eight RCMP officers have been added to the detachment in the last two years and the new addition will bring Langford’s RCMP officer complement in line with city council’s vision.
Langford Mayor Stewart Young said city council made the decision to hire more officers after hearing from residents.
“When we started to see a little bit of crime that isn’t really prevalent out here in Langford,” Young said. “Council had to take a little bit of action on that.”
Young said the community is growing with a lot of young families that should feel safe.
“When people, residents, are talking to council and say, ‘I don’t really feel that safe,’ we had to do something obviously to look after that part of it,” Young said.