New anti-social behaviour scheme

Standard reporter Hayley Gallimore and Insp Simon Oughten G120531-4a
Standard reporter Hayley Gallimore and Insp Simon Oughten G120531-4a

GAINSBOROUGH is leading the way in a new pilot designed to ensure complaints of anti-social behaviour (ASB) are dealt with effectively, says police inspector for West Lindsey Simon Outen.

Insp Outen sat down with the Standard this week to explain the ‘community trigger’ approach which has been adopted in West Lindsey after recommendations by the Home Office.

“It is not because we have a particularly high levels of ASB,” he said.

“It is actually that we have a good track record of tackling it in a multi agency approach.”

Inspector Outen explained how police officers already work closely with West Lindsey District Council and other agencies to tackle the problem.

And specially trained staff at the council can log reports of ASB on a shared database called Sentinel.

“It enables us to see what action has been taken so far in any particular case,” said Insp Outen.

He explained how the community trigger was aimed at times when people had reported incidents of ASB, but they felt nothing had been done.

“This trial gives us the chance to check that we do deal with incidents and try to resolve them as far as our powers will allow us.”

In West Lindsey the community trigger is activated when an issue is reported by three people in the same area - not five, as in other pilot areas like Manchester and Brighton and Hove.

Authorities will then seek to find out what action has been taken already, and what else could be done to stop the problem.

“This could be beneficial because it allows communities, quite rightly, to challenge us around what we do,” said Insp Outen.

Incidents of anti-social behaviour which don’t meet the trigger criteria, but are considered a high risk to someone’s safety, will be dealt with as if a trigger had been activated.

The pilot will last between six and 12 months with a view to it being rolled out across the country.

A Home Office review of how anti-social behaviour is tackled was prompted by the case of Fiona Pilkington, who killed herself and her disabled daughter after years of complaining to the police about harassment by local thugs.