Alan Bourke gives thanks to Gympie
AFTER 32 years of policing, Alan Bourke says one of his best retirement investments was his work helping to make Gympie a safe place to live.
The Gympie Region Superintendent who played a crucial role in solving the horrific Sian Kingi case many years ago, came to Gympie as District Inspector and set about establishing a proactive policing system aimed at eliminating serious and violent crime.
“I’ve enjoyed having that input into making Gympie a safe place to live and a great environment for me to spend my retirement,” he told The Gympie Times recently.
Gympie’s police service had suffered from a great deal of unavoidable instability, as a result of promotions and retirements.
“It’s been great to work with the community and in the community to make it a safe place for people to live,” he said.
“And we have a great community to work with here in Gympie.
“The majority of people are good, law-abiding citizens.
“Only a small percentage do the wrong thing and we’ve concentrated on those people.
“In recent years, Gympie has been statistically one of the safest places in Queensland to live.
“Police here work as a great team and so a lot to solve the crimes that do occur.
“We now have one of the highest clear-up rates for crime across the board.
“In most cases, this comes down to excellent work by police officers on the job.
“Serious crime is virtually nil.
“We have an overall clear-up rate well into 90 per cent and that really has only been achieved by the excellent police we’ve got here.”
Alan Bourke retires as a superintendent on July 9.
He has been based in Gympie for nearly eight years, probably one of the longest stretches in one district by any one police officer.
But major crime has only been part of the job.
Traffic issues have also been a big part of police work in our region, especially at holiday time, when we become a major destination for visitors from all over.
In that context, Easter was generally a good result for Spt Bourke, with traffic and other police reporting good behaviour by drivers and holidaymakers, generally.
On Alan Bourke’s watch, police have responded to violence in the CBD by supporting the highly successful Liquor Industry Accord Group (LIAG), which has seen publicans and other nightspot operators helping drive a new deal with police and customers to keep the streets and all of us safe during a night out in Gympie.
“Prevention is better than cure,” he said in an interview with Lee Gailer last year. He’s glad to see it’s working.