Dealing with ASB in Peterborough
'I thought that it would be timely to tell you about the Police and Prevention and Enforcement Service (PES) in the Safer Peterborough Partnership and how we deal with reports of anti-social behaviour (ASB),' writes Kate Firman, from the Safer Peterborough Partnership
“We know that reports of anti-social behaviour increase at this time of year with the lighter evenings and good weather. Whilst most residents of Peterborough enjoy the summer and behave appropriately, however we are mindful that there are some who do not and we are working hard to try to reduce this happening.
“When a call comes into the police (normally via 101 as these will rarely require an emergency response), the call taker will record the details of the incident and decide whether it is a police matter. For example, if it is a noise complaint the more appropriate agency to deal with it will be Environmental Health and the caller will be redirected to them. The call taker will also determine whether the issue is personal to the caller, for example a neighbour dispute that is directed towards them specifically, and risk assess the situation during the call. This will be further risk assessed by officers sent to deal with the incident. If the risk assessment shows that further, often partnership work is required, then an ‘incident file’ will be raised (similar to a crime report but for ASB). The attending officers may complete additional paperwork like a GAP (guardian awareness programme) form where the ASB involves young people, take statements for and carry out house to house enquiries.
“The police in the PES are then sent incident files to investigate. The majority of these cases are transferred to a common computer system which other partners can access and update. These cases are regularly reviewed with police and the council ASB team, Youth Offending Service, Women’s Aid, Fire Service, Housing and any other relevant agencies and decisions made about the best way to tackle the behaviour. This may involve using the latest ASB legislation. For example, by sending warning letters prior to issuing and if necessary enforcing a Community Protection Notice and putting closure notices on premises to restrict who may frequent them. This was taken a step further in June when we secured an ASB Closure Order at Peterborough Magistrates’ Court to close an address down. This month we charged an individual who breached their Criminal Behaviour Order and they will now be going to court for ASB related matters. In addition, we have recently used other notices at unauthorised traveller encampments to good effect. We are also working with the Council ASB team (who are part of the PES) to have our first public space protection orders (PSPOs). These will allow us to specify which types of behaviour will not be tolerated in certain areas of the city where ASB is most prevalent.
“We also identify the top five locations for victims and offenders involved in ASB. This helps us and partners to know where to focus activity. This information is shared with police colleagues across Peterborough so that they can tackle it when appropriate too.
“I hope that you all enjoy a happy and peaceful summer and feel assured that we are here to help if not.”