Call for more cops after spate of murders

police

A former cop is urging more officers to be stationed in northern Tasmania after a spate of gruesome murders.

Former commander and now Member of the legislative council Ivan Dean says in Launceston alone, with a population of around 80 thousand people, there have been five murders in the past three years.

The death of 22-year-old Bradley Breward, whose murderer was jailed last week, was the latest in the string of killings.

Mr Dean says the number of police on the beat in the north of the state is concerning.

"I think we probably need more police in the north of the state and I've said that and I've continued to say that. When you look at us and compare to the south of state, we don't have the similar number of police pro rata of people."

Mr Dean is convinced there has been a shortage of officers for some time.

"In 2012-13 police lost a lot of members when there was a downsizing for the force. Well if you look at it now, I don't think we've got the numbers back up to where they were."

He says members of the public have come to him concerned for their safety.

"There is certainly more violence than what there has been and that is a real concern to people, particularly elderly people, who have told me they're feeling unsafe in their homes at the present time."

Mr Dean is also calling for tougher penalties.

"If you look at the sentencing last week for Mr Breward's murder, he was subjected to torture over a long period of time, it was premeditated and I don't think that person should ever get out of jail," he said.