'Shameful' behaviour of youth gangs causing 'distress and disruption' in Carlisle

Police want to tackle a growing youth crime problem. Credit: PA Images

The "truly shameful" behaviour of groups of youths is causing "distress and disruption" in Carlisle.

Criminal damage, assault, public order offences, loitering and general anti-social behaviour have all been reported in the city centre and in Harraby over the last few weeks.

These have involved "large groups of young people, aged between 11 and 17" who are gathering in both areas at night, leading Cumbria Constabulary to increase the number of patrols it carries out and the issuing of daily dispersal orders.Carlisle Chief Inspector, Gill Cherry said the force and its partner organisations wanted to tackle the issue and has also made an appeal for parents to help.

"We believe there are a number of separate groups of young people involved and I can reassure our communities that action is being taken on a daily basis to investigate and prevent further incidents," she said. "We have issued dispersal orders each night that incidents have been reported and will continue to do so.

"Patrolling of identified locations of concern has been increased and we are continuing to deploy officers wearing body cameras to capture the behaviour of those responsible.

“Following reports over the last week, two young people, aged 11 and 13 respectively, were stopped by our officers and taken home to their parents. Both children have received It’s Your Choice warnings from our Child Centred Policing Team for their anti-social behaviour."

The force has appealed directly to the parents of those involved to help.

"Some of the incidents reported to us are of truly shameful behaviour with members of your community, young and old, being subject to abusive language and being made to feel unsafe or intimidated," councillor Cherry said. "This must stop and if you suspect your child is involved in this behaviour, then please speak with them and help us prevent further incidents."

She pointed out that a young person getting arrested could dramatically impact their chances in later life.

“We are appealing to the public for more information on these incidents, including the identification of those involved.

“Anyone found to be committing crime or causing anti-social behaviour will be dealt with robustly.”

The interior of a damaged bus in Carlisle. Credit: Viewer image

On Saturday, three buses were attacked in Harraby. One man needed hospital treatment after being hit by a brick.

Operator Stagecoach suspended evening services on its 61 route as a result. This is set to resume tonight.Anyone with information can contact police online or by calling 101, quoting incident number 190 of Saturday's date. Alternatively, contact Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111. In an emergency, call 999.