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‘Brazen’ drug dealing by our homes makes us scared to go out, say residents

PUBLISHED: 16:03 11 November 2018 | UPDATED: 12:20 16 November 2018

Providence Lane in Ipswich. Picture: ANDREW PAPWORTH

Providence Lane in Ipswich. Picture: ANDREW PAPWORTH

Archant

Frightened residents are scared to leave their homes because they can see “brazen” drug dealing escalating on their street, it as been claimed.

Providence Lane in Ipswich. Picture: ANDREW PAPWORTHProvidence Lane in Ipswich. Picture: ANDREW PAPWORTH

However, police have told residents close to the so-called drug hotspot in Providence Lane, Ipswich: “Don’t turn a blind eye.”

Residents reportedly see as many as 10 to 15 ‘customers’ congregate to buy drugs from multiple dealers at the site near Norwich Road.

Neighbours say people are frightened to leave their homes once the dealers start work around 4pm, leading to calls for a greater police presence to deter the criminal activity.

But while praising the force’s response, ward councillors for the area claim officers do not have the resources to deal with the problem.

Providence Lane in Ipswich. Picture: ANDREW PAPWORTHProvidence Lane in Ipswich. Picture: ANDREW PAPWORTH

One resident, who did not want to be named, said: “Over the past month the situation has escalated to the point where you’ve now got brazen, open drug dealing.

“I can count maybe upwards of four or five drugs dealers and each has multiple customers.

“They start dealing about 4pm until 9pm. They are brazen. They can have around 10 to 15 customers standing around with them.

“It’s really, really bad. My neighbours don’t get involved. People don’t want to get involved nowadays because they fear for their lives.

“These drug dealers aren’t scared of pulling out a knife and as such people just don’t go outside. They are too scared to go outside.

“The police need to have a proper presence in the area, because that’s how the dealers can act with impunity.

“If the police had a proper presence, that would deter it.”

Westgate ward councillor Carole Jones said she had been contacted by residents and is working with police to try and resolve the issue.

She said: “We’ve got a problem like every other town in the country.

“Ordinary neighbourhoods find themselves plagued by bold dealers trying to do deals with users, who themselves are trapped.

“It makes people very stressed to have to live with that.

“Although the police do what they can, they are severely hampered by a lack of resource.”

A Suffolk Constabulary spokesman said: “Police are aware of drug related activity in the area of Norwich Road and work is ongoing to address this issue.

“We fully appreciate that such activity can blight communities and seriously affect people’s quality of life.

“Our local communities have an important role to play in this too - don’t turn a blind eye. Talk to us about your concerns and we will work together to resolve the issue. “Proactive arrests, engagement work and contributions from other partners all make a positive impact and we are determined to see this continue.”

Anyone with information should contact Suffolk Police on 101 or call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.

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