Police to use dispersal powers after 'sharp rise' in anti-social behaviour in Wellingborough

The additional powers came into force today (Wednesday) and will initially be in place for 48 hours

By Stephanie Weaver
Wednesday, 3rd August 2022, 4:22 pm
Updated Wednesday, 3rd August 2022, 4:41 pm
There has been a rise in anti-social behaviour in Wellingborough since the start of the summer holidays
There has been a rise in anti-social behaviour in Wellingborough since the start of the summer holidays

Parents and carers are being urged to make sure they know where their children are following a spike in anti-social behaviour across Wellingborough since the start of the school holidays.

Neighbourhood policing teams in Wellingborough and East Northants have issued the plea following the launch of Operation Quarrel, aimed at combatting anti-social behaviour throughout the summer.

However, in recent days there has been a sharp rise in incidents across the town, and for the next 48 hours, police have been given additional dispersal powers to help prevent further crime and anti-social behaviour.

There has been a rise in anti-social behaviour in Wellingborough since the start of the summer holidays

The Section 34 of the Anti-Social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014 grants a power to police officers and Police Community Support Officers (PCSOs) to deal with individuals engaging in anti-social behaviour, crime and disorder.

This applies not only when an incident has happened or is taking place, but when they are likely to occur, in any location and anyone dispersed and found to have returned within this period can be arrested.

The dispersal power came into force from 1.30pm today (Wednesday, August 3) and will initially be in place until 1.30pm on Friday, August 5, and under Section 34, officers have an additional power to confiscate items which has led to someone ordered to disperse.

Members of the neighbourhood policing team have adopted a problem-solving approach by stepping up proactive high-visibility patrols and engaging the support of partner agencies to target and signpost those intent on causing misery for those who live in, work or are visiting the area.

Neighbourhood policing sergeant Barry Hughes said: “It is important to remember that not all young people we speak to are committing anti-social behaviour, however there is a minority who are intent on causing trouble.

“We want our communities to be a safe place for everyone and are urging parents to speak to their children to make sure they know where they are and who they may be associating with.

“Anti-social behaviour has a detrimental impact on our communities, which is why we’ve set up Operation Quarrel to combat this type of offending during the school holidays and will be taking robust action against anyone found to be causing issues in our town.”