Booze ban to stop teen yobs

PUBLISHED: 05:16 14 September 2006 | UPDATED: 09:52 24 May 2010

A CRUCIAL meeting has been called by police to discuss introducing hard-hitting measures in a medieval town square to crack down on yobs. Axbridge has a history of problems with antisocial youngsters in The Square but in recent weeks the cases of maliciou

A CRUCIAL meeting has been called by police to discuss introducing hard-hitting measures in a medieval town square to crack down on yobs.Axbridge has a history of problems with antisocial youngsters in The Square but in recent weeks the cases of malicious vandalism and incidents where people are being intimidated have got steadily worse.Police say they will not let residents feel threatened in their own town and have organised a special meeting on Monday to discuss what can be done. It is suspected the problems are alcohol or even drug-fuelled.Officers will suggest introducing tough measures such as:* Banning the drinking of alcohol outside licensed premises.* Enforcing exclusion orders for 'offensive' individuals.* Implementing group dispersal orders, so it is illegal for groups to gather in areas such as The Square.* Increasing the number of police patrols at problem times. Less than two weeks ago the Somerset Mercury reported how a 20-strong group of yobs went on a late-night rampage through the historic town and even targeted certain residents' property when they tried to intervene.The police will meet with the Local Action Team (LAT) and other prominent groups to discuss what could be done.Sgt Peter Yenson, based at Cheddar Police Station, said: "Historically Axbridge Square is a meeting place for them and always has been."It is the same individuals causing the problems and we believe it is people from within the town, a place like Axbridge does not tend to attract from outside."We know who some of them are and officers are gaining evidence against one or two individuals."We could do all sorts of things to solve the problems such as drink bans and exclusion orders and it is about working with groups like the LAT to decide which is the best solution."We will also be trying to encourage the LAT to be more active, which I know the members are trying to do."We are also likely to get another Police Community Support Officer (PCSO) later in the year, which will help immensely.

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