Drug-driver who killed man in crash has sentence increased
A drug-driver who killed a man in a crash – then ran away from the scene – has had his sentence increased by the Court of Appeal.
Christopher Fenton was more than three times the legal limit for cannabis when his Audi S4 crossed into the path of an oncoming Citroen Picasso on Fairlight Road, Fairlight, around 6.45pm on 6 March 2020.
The Picasso was driven by Marcus Haynes, 65, from Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, who sadly died from his injuries at the scene.
His wife, aged 66, suffered serious injuries and their son, aged 24, from Stroud Gloucestershire, sustained minor injuries.
Fenton, aged 40, self-employed, of Lower Waites Lane, Fairlight, ran away from the scene but was later returned by his mother, having changed his footwear.
He pleaded guilty to the offences of causing death by dangerous driving and causing serious injury by dangerous driving, and appeared at Lewes Crown Court on Monday 10 May, where he was sentenced to a total of three years and eight months’ imprisonment.
But the sentence was appealed, and at the Court of Appeal of Tuesday 6 July, it was increased to five years and three months. His driving disqualification period was also extended to six years and seven months.
Witness appeal following fire in St Leonards tower block
Police are appealing for witnesses to a deliberate fire at a block of flats in St Leonards.
Emergency services were called to Kennedy Court, Stonehouse Drive, around 7pm on Sunday (July 4) following reports of a mattress alight on the 13th floor.
The fire, which is believed to have been started deliberately, was quickly extinguished. No major damage was caused and no one was harmed, however the matter is being taken very seriously owing to the danger the fire would have presented inside a tower block had it not been so quickly contaminated.
Detectives from Hastings CID are investigating, and working with colleagues from East Sussex Fire and Rescue Service to raise awareness of fire safety within the area.
They continue to urge residents living in flats to familiarise themselves with the building’s fire plans and exit routes, and to ensure smoke alarms are in full working order.
Anyone who witnessed the fire, saw any suspicious behaviour in the area around that time, or who has any other information is asked to contact police online or by calling 101 quoting 1213 of 04/07.
Alternatively, you can contact the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.
Three arrested after man knocked unconscious in street fight in Hastings
Three people were arrested after a man was knocked unconscious in a fight in a street in Hastings.
Police were called to Queens Road at 1.19am on Sunday (July 4). A 28-year-old man from the town was reported to have lost consciousness before police arrival and was taken to Conquest Hospital for treatment to a head injury.
Two men aged 23 and 24, both from St Leonards-on-Sea, were arrested on suspicion of affray and a 28-year-old man from Hastings was arrested on suspicion of wounding or inflicting grievous bodily harm without intent and possession of a controlled drug of class B – cannabis. All remained in custody on Sunday morning.
Anyone who witnessed the incident or events leading up to it is asked to report online or call 101 quoting serial 106 of 04/07.
New cohort of officers join Sussex Police
Twenty-five new recruit constables have taken their first steps in policing this week.
The new recruits were formally sworn in as police officers on Tuesday (29 June) at a low key attestation ceremony carefully adapted to meet Covid-safety measures, with family and friends of the new recruits experiencing the proud moments via Zoom.
Twelve of the new recruits have joined through the three year Police Constable Degree Apprenticeship and thirteen have joined through the two-year Detective Constable Degree Holder Entry Programme (DHEP). The new officers will spend nine weeks training at the county police HQ in Lewes before joining dedicated coaching units in police stations countywide.
For more information you can visit the Sussex Police website here.
Sussex Police leading the way with Hate Crime Scrutiny Panel
Sussex Police is looking for members of the community to be part of a new Sussex Independent Hate Crime Scrutiny and Involvement Panel.
The panel will be made up of volunteer members of the public, and will provide feedback and advice on the police’s response to Hate Crime in the county, seeking to improve the two-way communications between officers and the diverse communities they serve.
Sussex Police welcomes all expressions of interest, and are particularly keen to hear from young people as well as those who have been a victim of Hate Crime or have an understanding of Hate Crime. If you are interested in joining, please contact Alex.Hyattt@sussex.pnn.police.uk by Wednesday, July 14.
For more information, you can visit the Sussex Police Website here.Burglary Summary
There have been 2 burglaries reported to us across Hastings this week.
There has been a burglary reported at a residential property off of Church Road, St Leonards (582 of the 02/07 relates).
A burglary has been reported at a commercial building off of Albert Road, Hastings (006 of the 06/06 relates).
Members of the community are asked to remain vigilant to any suspicious activity in their area, and to report any concerns to police.
You can also visit our crime prevention pages on home security here, for ways you can protect your homes and belongings.
Arrests made across Hastings this week
Over 39 arrests have been made across the Hastings area this week, for various offences including, Drunk and Disorderly, Affray and Common Assault.
If your report is not urgent you can call us on 101 or through our website service here: https://www.sussex.police.uk/reportcrime
Online reports are triaged in the same way as 101 calls but keep our phone lines free for those who can only contact us by phone.
In the case of an emergency, crime in action or where there is a threat to life always call 999.
Out and about in the community
As always, our neighbourhood team have been out in the community. You might have seen us at some of the following places:
Following reports of anti-social behaviour in the area, officers have been out on regular evening patrols in Alexandra Park, Hastings.
Local PCSO have spent some time this week catching up with the local councillor for Old Hastings Ward. Working alongside our partners is crucial, being able to share information and updates helps us to keep our communities safe.
Rural Crime Team Monthly Update
The Rural Crime Team have released their monthly update over on the Sussex Police website.
Their updates go up at the beginning of each month and gives an overview of the work the team has been up to across the force including updates for the local area.
You can find the update here.Action Fraud scam watch
Did you know scams cost the UK economy £5-£10 Billion a year, with over 50% of people over 65 having already been targeted by scams; and only 5% of all scams reported?
This week’s scam and fraud reminders from Action Fraud:
Warning about scam calls from “matching” mobile phone numbers
The National Fraud Intelligence Bureau (NFIB) is warning the public to be vigilant of scam calls that appear to be coming from numbers similar to their own.
Commonly, the first seven digits (07nnnnn) match the victim’s own number.
The calls impersonate well-known government organisations, or law enforcement agencies, and will ask the recipient of the call to “press 1” on order to speak with an advisor, or police officer, about unpaid fines or police warrants.
Protect yourself – What you need to do
Government and law enforcement agencies will not notify you about unpaid fines or outstanding police warrants by calling or texting you. Do not respond to any calls or texts you receive about these.
Always take a moment to stop and think before parting with money or your personal information, it could prevent you from falling victim to fraud. Remember, it’s okay to reject, refuse or ignore any requests. Only criminals will try to rush or panic you.
If you receive a suspicious text message, you can report it by forwarding the message to 7726. It’s free of charge.
Suspicious telephone/mobile calls can be reported to Action Fraud via their website: police.uk/report-phishing
For more information visit the Action Fraud website here.
Help us keep Sussex safe
If you saw or heard anything, or have any information about any incident in this message please contact us online, or call 101, quoting the reference number provided.
Alternatively you can contact the independent charity Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111, or online at www.crimestoppers-uk.org
You can also visit our website at www.sussex.police.uk where you can find our easy to use online forms to report all non-emergencies to us.
You can also find police advice to keep you safe and help you understand the law, and also browse our crime prevention pages for first-hand knowledge, industry best practices and practical crime prevention advice from officers and specialist teams all across the police.
Have you ever had a policing question that doesn't actually require direct police involvement to answer?
Ask the Police is a great online source of information for the most frequently asked policing questions, visit www.askthe.police.uk/ for more information.
We work closely with Neighbourhood Watch and you can find out more about your local scheme online.
Visit the Hastings and St Leonards Neighbourhood Watch website: https://www.haslnw.uk/
Your local teams
You can find your local PCSO by entering your postcode at https://www.police.uk/
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