It's ABC in teen crackdown

PUBLISHED: 12:56 24 April 2006 | UPDATED: 09:11 24 May 2010

TEENAGE tearaways behaving badly could be forced to sign special acceptable behaviour contracts. Youngsters plaguing the town by behaving antisocially, drinking or vandalising property will be issued with the special contracts by police. On the first inst

TEENAGE tearaways behaving badly could be forced to sign special acceptable behaviour contracts.Youngsters plaguing the town by behaving antisocially, drinking or vandalising property will be issued with the special contracts by police.On the first instance, youngsters who come to the police's attention will have a letter sent home to their parents and their information collected and put on a database.If they are found misbehaving again they will be issued with an Acceptable Behaviour Contract (ABC).The contracts - a forerunner to issuing a court endorsed Antisocial Behaviour Order - will set out how the youngster is expected to behave.North Somerset Police sector inspector Steve Date said: "The contract is an agreement between the police and the young person."It sets out how we expect the young person to behave and gives the young people time to reflect about their behaviour and the impact of their actions on the wider community."It can also be tailored to suit and target specific problems."If the young person continues to behave badly, the police will then apply to the courts for a legally binding antisocial behaviour order.Insp Date said: "Rather than applying straight for an ASBO, the courts prefer us to use an ABC. The contracts give us an opportunity to work with the young people and try and steer them away from trouble."If the person continues to cause problems we can show the courts we have done everything possible and worked with these people before applying for an ASBO.It is hoped to start to introduce the ABC's this summer in a bid to crack down on trouble spots including Portishead Lake Grounds and the Scotch Horn Park in Nailsea.Inspector Date added: "As the summer approaches and the nights get lighter, this is the perfect time to start introducing these contracts if they prove necessary.

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