Police hail 'zero tolerance' success

A ZERO tolerance approach to drunken anti-social behaviour over the Christmas period in south Suffolk has today been hailed as a success by police.The Christmas NightSafe Alcohol Misuse Enforcement Campaign (AMEC), which ran for an eight-week period over Christmas and New Year, was aimed at reducing alcohol-related offences.

A ZERO tolerance approach to drunken anti-social behaviour over the Christmas period in south Suffolk has today been hailed as a success by police.

The Christmas NightSafe Alcohol Misuse Enforcement Campaign (AMEC), which ran for an eight-week period over Christmas and New Year, was aimed at reducing alcohol-related offences.

The campaign's figures show the early intervention approach saw a decrease in sexual offences by 70 per cent and a decrease in assaults by up to 31pc compared with the same period the previous year.

Throughout the campaign, 385 arrests were made in Ipswich, Sudbury and Hadleigh.

Figures from the southern area during the campaign compared with the same period in November and December 2004 and January 2005 show a general decrease in offences.

Fear or provocation of violence was down by 53.3pc, assault on police officers was down by half, actual bodily harm was down by 31.4pc, grievous bodily harm, section 18, was down by 25pc and grievous bodily harm, section 20, was down by 14.3pc.

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In contrast police did see an increase in minor public order offences, which they had predicted as a result of the zero tolerance approach they adopted.

Causing harassment, alarm or distress was up by 76pc, drunk and disorderly was up by 35.6pc, criminal damage was up by 13.5pc, affray was up by 13.3pc and domestic incidents were up by 9.7pc.

Chief inspector Alan Caton said: “These findings prove that our approach is correct. Officers worked hard with other agencies to ensure problems around the towns were nipped in the bud before they escalated and became a major problem.”

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