Fingers pointed at late night yobs

DRINKERS in Weston could be asked to give a fingerprint before they buy a pint in a bid to call time on yobs. Hi-tech scanners could be installed at the entrances to clubs and customers would give a biometric scan of their right forefinger before entering

DRINKERS in Weston could be asked to give a fingerprint before they buy a pint in a bid to call time on yobs.Hi-tech scanners could be installed at the entrances to clubs and customers would give a biometric scan of their right forefinger before entering.The state-of-the-art technology would bring up a clubber's personal details once they are registered with the system. Door staff would know instantly who they are, their age and if they had been caught fighting or causing a nuisance elsewhere.Known troublemakers could be turned away from every venue that has the fingerprint system installed.It would be voluntary to register on the system and up to pub and club owners whether they ask all or some of their customers to register.Biometric scanners have already been installed in clubs and pubs in Yeovil and a group of Weston's business owners were expected to go on a fact-finding mission to the town yesterday (Thurs) as the Mercury went to press.Sergeant Dave Holtby, of Weston police, said: "We're only looking at whether the system would be viable in the town at the moment."There is no 'big brother' element because the police would not have access to the information unless a severe crime took place."Those people who are currently banned from nightspots and shops could be entered on the system and it would make it easier to enforce the ban."In Yeovil, venues with the scanners have noticed an increase in customers because women prefer to go somewhere safer and the men inevitably follow."Obviously we have tourists in Weston but if, for example, a group of 10 wanted to enter a club, door staff might ask two or three to register so someone's details were logged in case of trouble."In the future, as people see the merits and get used to the idea, we could look at linking the systems in Yeovil and Weston as a lot of people travel between the two towns."The system would record a person's name, address, date of birth, fingerprint scan and photograph.An independent company in London would store the information and club owners would only have access to a person's details if they entered their club.If a customer agrees, the information could also be used for direct marketing.


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