Leaflet drop to curb anti-social behaviour

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POLICE in Ballymoney are planning a leaflet drop in a number of housing estates in the town in an attempt to help reduce the incidents of anti-social behaviour.

A spokesman stressed that there was no significant problems with the estates being targeted - Berryfields, Warren, Nursery Avenue and Route Avenue on the Knock Road, but conceded they were aware of some problems.

The leaflets will encourage people that if there are any incidences of anti-social behaviour they should telephone the PSNI and, where possible, try and assist their neighbours.

A Neighbourhood Watch Scheme currently operates in the Berryfields estate according to one resident who said it was working very well.

“We don’t have many problems here because we look out for each other,” the person said.

Inspector David Anderson said patrols had been increased in the estates and that a derelict house had been secured in response to complaints, but reitereated that the problem was no worse than some other areas of the town.

Indeed, the latest figures presented to a recent meeting of the District Policing Partnership showed that anti-social behaviour had reduced by 19 per cent from the period Arpil to December last year compared with the previous year. In the latter period there were 725 reports, which included the manner of driving as well as noisy neighbours, reducing to 587 reports.

A caller to the Times was more forceful about the issue.

He said the trouble involved some young people from the estates as well as a number outside.

He claimed that five youths had reportedly been spoken to and since then there had hardly been one single incident.

He hoped that stern action would be taken by the PSNI to prevent any recurrence.

“We want to see tough measures against anyone responsible for bad behaviour.

“We had a lot of trouble along the Knock Road with eggs thrown at houses as well as garden plants and shrubs damaged.

“I have spoken to a number of neighbours who say they had all been subjected to abuse or people entering their property and damaging items. We are not making this up.”

The caller said the problem had been going on for a number of years and that people were fed up with it.