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Fourteen Arrests So Far In Rural West Sussex Youth Crime Operation

Entrance to Barnham, West Sussex (Image: © 2024 Eddie Mitchell)

In what the service said is a further response to rising crime around two West Sussex villages, Sussex Police have arrested a total of 14 people.

Operation Precinct was launched in February as a scheme to respond to violence, shoplifting and other disorder by youths in the Barnham and Yapton areas.

The initiative brings together partners including British Transport Police, Southern Rail, local authorities, schools, and businesses such as Tesco and Co-op.

Following a public meeting which was held on 4 April at Barnham Community Hall to understand and discuss the concerns facing the local community, police said a number of extra measures are set to be put in place to deter further crime and anti-social behaviour in the area.

An increase in patrols in Barnham and Yapton is set to be carried out, working with British Transport Police, to ensure a heightened police presence is seen by residents.

Chief Inspector Will Keating-Jones said:

"Residents and business owners are at the heart of the Barnham community and so it's important we hear their views.

The April 4 meeting in Barnham ©2024 Eddie Mitchell

"The meeting was constructive and we were able to discuss the huge amount of work which has already taken place to tackle the issues which concern residents during their day-to-day lives.

"Our team has also worked extremely hard to issue four Community Protection Warnings (CPWs), which gives the offender a set of conditions they must adhere to.

"If they breach the warning, it can escalate to a Community Protection Notice obtained through the courts.

"Sussex Police will continue to identify and robustly deal with those committing crimes in the area. We will ensure that the hard work continues."

In addition to the fourteen arrests made so far, officers stated that a further seven young people have been interviewed by appointment.

A total of three people have been charged and nine people will now be dealt with via out-of-court disposals managed by the Youth Offending Team.

Members of the public are also urged to report a crime to police at the earliest opportunity – dial 999 if it’s an emergency or if the crime is taking place at that time, otherwise report online or call 101.

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