Clacton: getting to the root of anti-social behaviour
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Our Clacton Town Centre Team works closely with Tendring District Council’s anti-social behaviour patrol officer Dan Kingham, who regularly goes out on patrol with police officers and police community support officers.
They predominantly patrol the town centre and the seafronts where we have a public spaces protection order which lets us tackle anti-social behaviour, such as street drinking and begging, which puts people off coming to the town centre.
Acting Inspector Aaron Homatopoulos, of Tendring Community Policing Team, says Dan provides a valuable link between police and the district council which means we are able to support people who need it.
“Dan is based with us and works the same shifts as the town centre team. They go out on joint patrols in the town centre and the area of the public spaces protection order to target anti-social behaviour. He also has close ties to CCTV Careline and housing officers.
“It’s not just about moving on people who are causing a nuisance, it’s about getting to the root of the problem and getting people help if they need it.
“But, if enforcement action is needed, it will be taken. This will include issuing community protection warnings and community protection notices if the anti-social behaviour continues. We are also working with the council to ensure that fixed penalty notices can be issued for breaches of local bylaws.”
Acting Inspector Aaron Homatopoulos
“We direct people who are begging to charities which can help them, give them food and somewhere to shower and wash their clothes.
“Fortunately, we don’t have much of a rough-sleeper problem because the council’s housing team is excellent and help those who are in need. We have homeless prevention officers and outreach workers with partner organisations.
“Like every town, we have issues with street drinkers but part of the public spaces protection order is that, if you are causing or likely to cause anti-social behaviour, we can remove drink and disperse people from the town centre. If they return, they can subsequently be arrested by the police.
“People can have a drink outside, just as they could on the beach. It’s a case of drawing the line as to what is acceptable and what we would deem as anti-social behaviour, if it’s affecting others.
“It’s the same with young people, if there’s a group of them, we’ll engage with them. If we get complaints or we feel it’s getting a bit much we engage with them – it’s always about engaging first. But if we have to disperse them, we will.
“Some of them don’t understand why or how their behaviour affects others until we engage with them and sometimes they are really apologetic because they didn’t realise they were being a problem and that’s the end of it.”
Tendring District Council anti-social behaviour patrol officer Dan Kingham
Report anti-social behaviour to us
Anti-social behaviour can affect not just individuals but entire communities, too. If you're experiencing anti-social behaviour or you see or hear about anti-social behaviour issues, we want you to report it to us so that we can work with our community partners to resolve community issues.
You can report incidents of anti-social behaviour on our website via Live Chat – open from 7am-11pm every day – or by completing an online report. You can also ring 101.
If you’ve been a victim of anti-social behaviour, or any crime, and are feeling mentally impacted by it, contact Victim Support on 0808 1689 111.