Drug dealing in Weston leaves people feeling like prisoners in their homes
PUBLISHED: 17:00 09 August 2018
'Intimidating' drug-dealers and addicts have left disabled and elderly people in part of Weston-super-Mare town centre feeling as if they are 'trapped in their own homes'.
A lack of street lighting and CCTV has been blamed for the number of drug-related incidents happening in Prospect Place.
One disabled woman who asked not to be named because she fears for her safety, told the Mercury drug-users inject heroin outside her front door at times.
She does not open her windows because of the smell of cannabis and fears what the drug-users outside may do.
She said: “There are elderly people here but they do not want to report it because they are scared they might get in trouble with the drug addicts.
“I feel intimidated. I can’t go out very often. I don’t know if the addicts are at the back door and it’s frightening. It is like being in a prison. I feel trapped.
“I barely get fresh air because I shut the window most of the time as I am worried.
“Sometimes they are off their faces, and I don’t know what they will do next.”
The woman lives in a property run by housing association Alliance Homes and says although she has tried to swap homes using the Home Choice website, no-one is willing to trade with her because of Prospect Place’s reputation.
Police say they carry out targeted patrols in response to information about criminal activity, and work with North Somerset Council to tackle drug crime, including visits to vulnerable people.
Neighbourhood Sergeant Lee Kerslake said: “When people tell us about the issues in specific areas we will do our best to deal with it positively and quickly.
“We routinely visit those we know to be at risk of having their premises taken over by dealers and would welcome information about any vulnerable people who could be affected by this.
“Timely information is key and I’d urge anyone with evidence of this sort of crime to get in touch with us as soon as possible with times, dates, locations and any names or descriptions of those involved.”
North Somerset Council and Alliance Homes said in a joint statement: “We’re working in partnership to tackle reports of antisocial behaviour at Prospect Place. It is important all incidents are reported in order to allow us to build up a picture of the issues so we can take appropriate action.”
The neighbourhood police team can be contacted on 101, or 999 in an emergency.