Summer ASB operation sees drop in youth offending in Stockport town centre
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Anti-social behaviour in Stockport town centre has fallen this summer following a plain-clothes operation.
Officers from GMP Stockport’s Prevention Hub have been patrolling the area during the school holidays with a particular focus on young offenders.
During the school holidays, there were 50% fewer reported incidents of youth ASB compared to 2022 with a drop from 30 to 15.
PC Steve Gotts, Stockport Schools Officer, said: “A number of stores had reported being plagued by a group of youngsters, some as young as 11 and 12, and this was putting people off going into those shops.
“We identified a group of youngsters causing the problems, not only in the town centre but also on public transport and further afield in Crewe and even London.
“We patrolled the town centre every day in the summer holidays, engaging with the youngsters and using Criminal Behaviour Orders and behaviour contracts where appropriate.
“We have built up strong relationships with the businesses in the town centre, checking in on them every day, and are hopeful we can continue the scheme next summer.”
There have also been several days of action carried out by the Stockport Central Neighbourhood Policing Team over the summer to tackle ASB.
Inspector John Picton, of GMP's Stockport Central Neighbourhood Policing Team, said: “Anti-social behaviour, including verbal abuse, threatening behaviour, harassment, intimidation, vandalism and criminal damage, had been highlighted as an issue in Stockport town centre and is a priority across the force.
"Analysis showed that historically, year on year, ASB incidents in the town centre increase throughout the summer months.
"Greater Manchester Police won't tolerate anti-social behaviour and will always take decisive action.
"The police-led Stockport Town Centre Summer Initiative involved partnership working with Stockport Council and the Youth Offending Team.
"Our aim was to proactively engage with youths, promoting various agencies' diversionary schemes to deter crime and ASB.
"The plain-clothes initiative improved public and business confidence in reporting incidents, providing a safer environment to work and shop.
"Engagement work will continue as a priority is to build public confidence in the police by working with partners and communities.
"Police officers and PCSOs will also attend public meetings on a regular basis and further initiatives are being planned."
Nicola Wood, manager of The Light cinema in the Redrock complex, said: “I want to take this opportunity to thank the team for their continued support and believe this scheme would be extremely beneficial during future school holiday times.
“Steve and the team have really supported The Light over the summer holidays, the result being a significant drop in anti-social behaviour with their presence in the town centre and the business as a whole.
“When I have had the need to contact them, they have always answered in a timely manner and offered support, advice and help to aid the business needs.
“This has had a positive effect on our guest experience with not only the guests feeling safe our team members have felt safe, supported and valued.”
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