Police have been granted a dispersal order to tackle youths who have been “harassing” locals in part of Stoke-on-Trent. The dispersal order was rolled out today in Abbey Hulton, Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire, in an attempt to crack down on anti-social behavior in the area. It gives the police the power to ban troublemakers from the designated area for up to 48 hours, while officers are able to take under-16s home.
The order is being used in Abbey Hulton where it came into force at 1.30pm today (February 21) and will run until 8pm tomorrow.
It has been granted for officers and PCSOs to use in the locality of Greasley Road, Holdcroft Road, the lane adjoining Holdcroft Road to Newhouse Road, Newstead Road, Abbey Lane, School Road, and Leek Road, reports StokeonTrentLive.
The force says there have been numerous reports of anti-social behavior in the area recently with “youths reportedly harassing members of the public.” Officers have issued a map detailing where the order applies with a number of streets included.
Those who are hit with an order and ignore it face being arrested. Senior officers say officers will also be stepping up patrols on the estate.
In a statement, Staffordshire Police confirmed the order had been granted under section 34 of the Anti-Social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act.
A spokesperson said: “Failing to comply with an order is a criminal offense and police can return anyone under the age of 16 to their home address.
“As part of the powers, we can issue the notices for a period of up to 48 hours and anyone found breaching a notice is liable to be arrested and face further action.
“There have been reports of ASB in the area recently, with youths reportedly harassing members of the public.”
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Inspector Hayley Eaton, of Stoke North Local Policing Team, said: “Following an increase in calls from concerned residents, officers will be patrolling the area to tackle any instances of crime or anti-social behaviour.
“We understand the impact this behavior can have and are continuing to work with partner agencies to tackle issues reported by our communities.
“We encourage parents and guardians to ensure they know where their children are, what they are up to, and who they are with.”