Two police forces have merged teams to tackle serious and complex crime.
From today, the Major Investigation Team will be operating across Cleveland and North Yorkshire police force areas from bases in Middlesbrough and Harrogate.
The new collaborative team replaces Cleveland Police’s Murder Investigation Team and North Yorkshire Police’s Major Crime Unit.
Bosses say it will significantly increase the level of resources available to tackle some of the most complex and serious incidents, such as murder, stranger rape and serial armed robberies.
The team also features a “cold case” unit of nine people to tackle this growing area of operations.
They say the overall number of people working in the Major Investigation Team has risen from 47 to 74, which includes a number of highly-trained civilian investigators, working to national standards.
The decision to create the Major Investigation Team was taken earlier in the year PCCs and Chief Constables as part of the Evolve Programme – a cross-
Force collaboration which looks at where working together can improve services to communities and reduce operating costs.
Since that time, both forces have been working through the operational details, in preparation for the launch of the new team.
Police and Crime Commissioner for Cleveland, Barry Coppinger, said: “This initiative allows police to ensure that there are the right resources in place to deal with really serious crimes and to protect our communities from harm.
“It means that we are able to deliver this service with the best possible value for money whilst adding new resources and bringing expertise together.”
Cleveland Police Chief Constable Iain Spittal said: “The new Major Investigation Team is about having the best possible resources available to serve and protect our communities.
“From an operational policing perspective, the new team will help us to deal with the demand that complex cases can place on the police service.”