A police crackdown on antisocial and abusive behaviour in Daventry has seen 13 teenagers being interviewed under caution.
Following a week of information-gathering as part of ‘Operation Nugget’, on Tuesday officers from the Safer Community Team and the Antisocial Behaviour Unit offered parents of disruptive teenagers the choice of their child being arrested or voluntarily attending the town police station.
Officers interviewed teenagers in relation to a number of incidents, including attacks on a postman and a teacher in school,damage to the town’s CCTV equipment and damage to a shop window.
In addition four teenagers aged between 14 and 16 were arrested on Tuesday, February 17 in relation to allegations of racially aggravated criminal damage to a restaurant on High Street.
Sgt Sam Dobbs, who has been coordinating the operation said: “I have to say that the majority of the teenagers we have interviewed at the police station have never been in the police interview room before and showed real remorse during their time with us, and their parents were largely supportive.
“A minority showed no remorse, and the response from a small number of parents was disappointing to say the least.”
Once the interviews – set to continue for the rest of the week – have concluded police will decide whether further action will be taken.
In the meantime, Sgt Dobbs said Operation Nugget will now move into its ‘prevention phase’, which will involve meetings between police and local schools and support agencies.
Sgt Dobbs pledged police would “come down very hard” on any future incidents more effectively thanks to new CCTV in the town and increased patrols. However, he stressed he was keen to avoid criminalising remorseful teenagers caught out in a “crowd mentality” and called for parents, workers in retail outlets and anyone else affected by antisocial behaviour to report incidents so they can be dealt with effectively.
He said: “They will be dealt with appropriately, as will those who are repeat offenders or show no remorse.”
For more on ‘Operation Nugget’ visit the Daventry Express website on www. daventryexpress.co.uk.