Vow to tackle yobs after PC beaten by gangBy Lewis Rudd
October 08, 2010
Police have vowed to get tough with anti-social yobs in Woodley after an officer was attacked by a mob of underage drinkers.
Top cops have revealed they are launching a new anti-social behaviour policy to tackle the issue after the officer, who is just two months out of police training, was repeatedly kicked and stamped on by a group of around 20 teenagers he was trying to break up in Woodford Park in Headley Road on Friday night.
The PC was attacked after he and a colleague confronted one alcohol-swigging 15-year-old to take him back to the police station so he could be collected by his parents.
The incident is the latest in a long-line of anti-social behaviour reported across the borough.
Inspector Pete Oliphant, deputy commander of Wokingham police, said he hopes a new matrix reporting scheme where incidents of repeat offending are recorded will help officers stop those who are repeatedly behaving anti-socially.
Insp Oliphant said: “Parents should make it their business to know where and what their youngsters are up to.
“They should also make it their business to know who they are hanging around with because the last thing we want is for more kids to get off the straight and narrow path.
“We want a peaceful community and the people need to be responsible to make sure that happens.”
While Operation Lion Cub has been rolled out by the forces to try to combat the problem in Woodley and other areas, officers are now turning their attention to parents.
PC Naomi Jolliffe, anti-social behaviour officer for Wokingham police, said: “The issue is caused by a minority who stir up incidents and encourage the rest of the group.
“Parents need to be certain where their children are when they go out in the evenings, most parents are shocked to find where there children are really going when they say they are going to local youth clubs, and even more shocked by the activities their children are involved in.
“If youths continue this behaviour, we will look at various consequences and a dispersal order is not out of the question.”
Councillor Beth Rowland, leader of Woodley Town Council, who has been involved with the town’s Neighbourhood Action Group, described the attack as a “disgrace to the people of the town”.
“We have had a problem with anti-social behaviour in Woodley, particularly in the town centre in the summer when plant pots and flowers were destroyed,” she said.
“It was petty stuff and nothing as serious as this.
“We are sadly living in a society where people think this sort of behaviour is acceptable, and it is not acceptable.”
The injured officer has since recovered and is back on the beat returning to full duties.
Anyone with information is asked to call 08458 505 505 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.
- A 15-year-old boy from Woodley arrested in connection with the incident has been re-bailed until November 20.
He was arrested on suspicion of assault occasioning actual bodily harm.