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Suffolk police report quiet Halloween as Essex Police battle hoax calls

PUBLISHED: 17:00 01 November 2017 | UPDATED: 17:00 01 November 2017

Police in Suffolk said Halloween passed peacefully with only 40 low-level incidents across the county. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

Police in Suffolk said Halloween passed peacefully with only 40 low-level incidents across the county. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

Archant

Police in Suffolk have reported 40 calls in relation to Halloween on Tuesday night – but no-one was arrested.

Halloween has become a community event. Picture: CONTRIBUTEDHalloween has become a community event. Picture: CONTRIBUTED

Suffolk police ran a dedicated dispatch folder for incidents related to Halloween, and recorded 40 low-level incidents – double the amount received last year.

But a police spokesman said 2016 was a particularly quiet year for Halloween calls, and that the incidents they were called to were relatively low-level incidents of anti-social behaviour which did not require arrests.

The spokesman said: “The night passed off relatively peacefully with our control room receiving around 40 calls which were related to Halloween.

“None of these incidents were serious and mainly constituted low-level anti-social behaviour.”

One of the Halloween do not disturb posters released by Suffolk police for homeowners to download and put in their window. Picture: SUFFOLK CONSTABULARYOne of the Halloween do not disturb posters released by Suffolk police for homeowners to download and put in their window. Picture: SUFFOLK CONSTABULARY

Police last week confirmed that they would be upping the number of patrols in key areas for trick or treating to help deter anti-social behaviour, and as part of its advice issued last week asked retailers to restrict the sale of eggs and flour to young people.

Police also issued posters for people to put in their windows if they did not want visitors.

The spokesman added: “Officers conducting patrols encountered a number of people out enjoying Halloween, the vast majority of whom were found to be in good spirits and behaving considerately towards others.”

In Essex, police had to battle a number of hoax and non-emergency calls to its 999 number.

A tweet from the force’s control room said: “We are experiencing a high volume of calls in to our @EPControlRoom about nuisance fireworks. Please think before calling if no crime.”

A further tweet added: “During #Halloween we had a lot more hoax calls and children calling 999 for ‘lol’. This isn’t funny or a game but a waste of time.”

The control room reported that from 10pm-4.30am it received 117 999 calls, but only 21 of those were genuine emergencies.

Officers have reminded people to use 999 responsibly, and said that misuse could result in serious consequences.

A spokesman from Essex Police said: “We take a zero-tolerance approach to hoax calls because they stop people who really need us from getting through.

“Our message is clear: it’s not clever, it’s not funny and it could well end up with you being arrested, fined and imprisoned.”

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