Here’s how Pendle police are cracking down on antisocial behaviour

Pendle police have revealed how they are cracking down on antisocial behaviour.
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Officers take to the roads nightly to deal with unruly youths causing nuisance in their neighbourhood.

The Pendle Neighbourhood Policing Team targets antisocial hotspots across the borough, helping to take children off the streets.

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Here is everything you need to know about the scale of antisocial behaviour in the area and how the force is helping to make our communities feel safer:

Pendle police say Colne Town Centre is a hotspot for antisocial behaviour. Photo: Kelvin StuttardPendle police say Colne Town Centre is a hotspot for antisocial behaviour. Photo: Kelvin Stuttard
Pendle police say Colne Town Centre is a hotspot for antisocial behaviour. Photo: Kelvin Stuttard

What is the Pendle Neighbourhood Policing Team?

The team is led by Sergeant John Sutcliffe and is currently prioritising youth anti-social behaviour, as well as drug dealing, anti-social driving and speeding.

What types of antisocial behaviour are officers dealing with?

Sergeant Sutcliffe says children as young as nine-years-old have been setting bins on fire, causing criminal damage, assaulting people, drinking alcohol in the streets, using drugs like cannabis and nitrous oxide, and shouting, swearing at and threatening to stab residents and shop workers.

Which areas are the worst for antisocial behaviour?

Police say unruly behaviour is more common in places where youths like to hang out, such as North Valley Retail Park and the town centre in Colne, as well as Heyhead Park, the train station and town centre in Brierfield.

Why do some youths engage in nuisance behaviour, according to the police?

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The key reason is that many young people do not know how and where they can access entertainment facilities in the area, say the Pendle policing team.

Is antisocial behaviour as bad as it seems on social media?

The perception of antisocial behaviour, fuelled by social media, is worse than the reality, according to Sergeant Sutcliffe.

"The perception is of gangs terrorising people. That makes it a bigger problem. You get one or two reports, and the community thinks there’s a massive issue when there’s not.

"The reality is that one or two people are being affected but we don’t want them targeting vulnerable adults. It affects their quality of life and they might feel they have to move. You might have an elderly resident who is scared to death in their own house because kids are throwing fireworks outside."

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Plus, he added: “Children are being accused of crimes they haven’t done. People say, ‘it’s such a person’, because they have a bad reputation in the area.

"People post pictures of them online and then the community end up knowing where they live and they become a target. You can have people coming round to your house causing problems.

"It can lead to families getting threats. What started out as low-level gets out of hand and becomes a big community issue.”

How do police deal with youths who repeatedly commit antisocial behaviour?

Police work with a child’s school or refer them to the Youth Offending Team, the cadets or youth groups.

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They can use stop-and-search powers and dispersal orders, which allow officers to ban a youth from an area for up to 48 hours.

As a result, Sergeant Sutcliffe added: "We’ve seen a reduction in ASB due to us going out every night. ASB is about keeping on top of it and stopping it becoming a problem, otherwise it can get out of hand.

"My team works really hard and even come in on their rest days to support operations. They do all they can and more.”