Sidmouth crime rise blamed on spate of graffiti tags

PUBLISHED: 16:30 14 June 2016


Crime in the town was up by 33 per cent in May, compared to the same month last year.

At the latest Sidmouth Town Council meeting on Monday (June 6), Sergeant Andrew Squires told councillors there had been a total of 44 crimes reported, 11 more than in the same period in 2015,

But he claimed all was not as it seemed, as the increase was mainly down to new reports being made regarding the March graffiti spate.

The chamber was told, violence with and without injures was down from 13 last year to five this year.

And, among the other crimes reported was one robbery, four burglaries of homes, three burglaries of non-dwellings, one vehicle offence and five shop-lifting incidents.

There were three other thefts, 16 criminal damages, one public order offence and three possessions of drugs.

Sgt Squires said the reason for the figures going a bit ‘doo-lally’ was because they had found a number of new graffiti tags which had been done in March but were only recorded in May. He added of the 16 criminal damage crimes, at least 13 were down to the spate.

Sgt Squires said three men, all with full-time jobs and between 18 and 25 years old, had admitted to the crimes and had been dealt with by way of a conditional caution. The trio have agreed to clean up their mess and write apologies to the affected residents where necessary. The clean-up, which has been organised for later this month, will be overseen by the police and StreetScene.

He added the anti-social behaviour season was also now upon them with the lighter evenings, so they were doing their best to keep everything under control.

Sgt Squires said they planned to make use of their new banning powers, which allowed PCSOs to stop a person from going into a designated area for 48 hours and, if they returned, to arrest them.

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