Tempers boil at crime forum

ANGRY residents have demanded police take action to stop young thugs ruining lives.Tempers frayed at a police forum, called to engage the long-suffering public of east Ipswich.

ANGRY residents have demanded police take action to stop young thugs ruining lives.

Tempers frayed at a police forum, called to engage the long-suffering public of east Ipswich. Many residents at the Holywells School-held forum were more than happy to oblige – slamming what they saw as a police failure to tackle problems plaguing Gainsborough and neighbouring areas.

Chief inspector Chris Mayhew and inspector Andy Solomon were the men facing the music.

And they were the first to admit that not everything has gone to plan in the policing of the area over the last year.


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Damning statistics on house burglaries were flashed on to a big screen in the hall, alongside more promising figures showing a drop in car crime.

Residents were clear where most of the problems were coming from. Children as young as five were repeatedly singled out for criticism.

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One woman told how she left her home to try and stop a gang of children attacking an ancient oak tree. She was met with a volley of foul-mouthed abuse.

She said: "The told me it was no good telling the police because they would just back the next night and carry on.

"They have got no respect for their parents, no respect for the police and no respect for their teachers.

"What sort of world are we living in."

Insp Solomon, sector commander for east Ipswich, admitted total crime had gone up in his patch, but said it was not an "outrageous" rise.

He said enforcing Anti-Social Behaviour Orders was beginning to have an impact on the streets and promised to keep searching for more effective ways of tackling youth crime.

Insp Solomon also promised the police would work hard to turn around rising crime and said 15 new community safety officers would be patrolling the streets to give the force a more visible presence.

And he pledged Suffolk Police would improve its record in answering non-urgent calls.

He said: "We are not good enough at answering non-emergency calls. It's totally unacceptable. It isn't good enough, we fully accept that and we are working to improve it. This area will improve."

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