Police slap dispersal order in Old Portsmouth after young yobs engage in anti-social behaviour
POLICE have issued a dispersal order to stop young people wreaking anti-social behaviour havoc in the city.
Officers have slapped the order covering the Camber and Broad Street until 6.55pm today (Thursday) amid spiralling menacing behaviour in the scorching heat.
Young yobs have been jumping off the Camber into unsafe waters, littering, carrying out criminal damage and dishing out a torrent of abuse towards staff at local premises.
A police spokeswoman said: ‘We are aware that these incidents are caused by a very small minority of our young population, and would like to thank those who are enjoying the area safely in the warmer weather.
‘We are using the dispersal tool as a means to deal with the rise in anti-social behaviour, whilst supporting the local residents in line with our commitment to keeping our communities safe.
‘While our teams have been conducting extra patrols in the area, we are now also making use of a Section 34 dispersal order.
‘We will continue to review this and another dispersal order may be put in place once this one has ended if deemed necessary.’
She added: ‘The dispersal order gives our officers the power to order a person to leave the area for a 48 hour period with no return. Refusal to comply with the order is a criminal offence.
‘Those under 16 will be taken to their home address, and follow-up work will be done with parents.’
Portsmouth South Insp Louise Tester said: ‘We know from having spoken to residents and businesses in the area how much anti-social behaviour of this kind can have a negative impact on people’s lives and this is simply not acceptable.
‘In addition, jumping off the Camber at a working dockyard is incredibly dangerous for those involved and others around them.
‘While we have ensured that we have extended our patrols in the area, we also feel that making use of these powers to disperse groups of people will help us further to tackle this issue.
‘After such a difficult year, we want everyone to be able to enjoy our city safely and will ensure we’re working robustly to tackle these anti-social behaviour issues so that this can be done.
‘We want to reassure our communities that our core work around making our neighbourhoods safer for everyone is our priority.’
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Anyone who witnesses anti-social behaviour in the area should call 101 or report it to police online at www.hampshire.police.uk. If a crime is in progress, call 999.