NEW powers for police have resulted in a fall in trouble in West Somerset caused by drunken yobs, the district’s police chief said yesterday.
Inspector Carol Pearce said dispersal powers under the section 27 notices mean police can move on anybody who is displaying anti-social behaviour or whose conduct could result in alcohol-fuelled criminal activity.
Inspector Pearce said that since the introduction of the powers in February, officers had issued 22 notices in Minehead, making the town a safer place in which to live and to visit.
Police now have the power of arrest if anybody refuses to move on when asked to do so, resulting in seven people being arrested since February.
Inspector Pearce said: “It is having quite an impact on reported anti-social behaviour and minor nuisance crime, which have both seen quite a fall.
“It is also connected with work we have been doing with local agencies, including the district council and licensees, with regular enforcement incentives in premises.
“These orders make it much more pleasant for holidaymakers and residents.
“It is all down to the amount of work locally that has gone on.”