Police crackdown on underage drinkers

Darlington and Stockton Times: Some of the alcohol seized by police as part of Operation Staysafe Some of the alcohol seized by police as part of Operation Staysafe

A CRACKDOWN on underage drinkers in Darlington parks resulted in dozens of bottles of alcohol being seized and four youths taken in by police.

The Staysafe Operation involved the police, Darlington Borough Council staff and addiction support service NECA working together to stop youths drinking alcohol and causing a nuisance in South Park and Green Park.

It was part of a targeted operation aimed at preventing teenage anti-social behaviour and drunkenness on key dates such as end of school terms and the start and finish of exam periods – such as GCSEs in this case.

Dozens of bottles of beer, cider and cans of lager were seized from the youths, four of whom were so drunk they had to be taken in by the police to sober up while their parents were called.

Insp Mick Button, head of Darlington Neighbourhood Policing Team, said the operation was a success and that its main aim was to keep the teenagers safe.

He said: “They are putting themselves at risk.

“If they are underage drinking they are going to make themselves vulnerable by not being able to control their actions and are putting themselves more at risk of sexual predators.

“And of course their own actions change; it is alcohol in, brain out, so they will do things and say things and carry out actions that are risky to their safety, not to mention the anti-social behaviour element that affects the public.”

Insp Button said that a worrying occurrence was that in some cases parents supply the teenagers with alcohol.

He added: “It is not in all cases, but we do get times when it is supplied by parents, but when they do that they are contributing to the risk of their children; that is the message we want to get across.”

Cllr Cyndi Hughes, cabinet member for young people, welcomed the crackdown.

She said: “Lots of residents have told us about young people not just drinking but also egg throwing and stone throwing in both parks.

“Obviously I welcome this police initiative and I am really pleased that they are taking action fairly quickly because we have worked long and hard to try and get the community to be tolerant of young people hanging out in the parks, because young people need a place to go.”

Comments (14)

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4:44pm Wed 14 May 14

think twice says...

Not much "cheap" booze on display, considering it was taken from school age kids.
Evidence that minimum pricing won't solve the problem?
Not much "cheap" booze on display, considering it was taken from school age kids. Evidence that minimum pricing won't solve the problem? think twice
  • Score: 21

5:29pm Wed 14 May 14

Madadrian says...

Why didn't the Echo reporter ask the policeman what law the 'under age drinkers had broken because as I understand it a 16 yr old can lawfully drink alcohol when ordered with a meal and can lawfully drink alcohol supplied by a parent.

I know the police now have the power to 'confiscate' alcohol from those under 18 but all that teaches these young people is that the police can rob them with impunity.
Why didn't the Echo reporter ask the policeman what law the 'under age drinkers had broken because as I understand it a 16 yr old can lawfully drink alcohol when ordered with a meal and can lawfully drink alcohol supplied by a parent. I know the police now have the power to 'confiscate' alcohol from those under 18 but all that teaches these young people is that the police can rob them with impunity. Madadrian
  • Score: 10

6:09pm Wed 14 May 14

loan_star says...

Just go to Inside Out on a weekend and I reckon half the lasses in there are under 18
Just go to Inside Out on a weekend and I reckon half the lasses in there are under 18 loan_star
  • Score: 16

6:55pm Wed 14 May 14

Jackaranda says...

loan_star wrote:
Just go to Inside Out on a weekend and I reckon half the lasses in there are under 18
Yeah, with tha slap on and tits hanging out, where's this Inside Out by the way?
[quote][p][bold]loan_star[/bold] wrote: Just go to Inside Out on a weekend and I reckon half the lasses in there are under 18[/p][/quote]Yeah, with tha slap on and tits hanging out, where's this Inside Out by the way? Jackaranda
  • Score: -16

6:58pm Wed 14 May 14

laboursfoe says...

Madadrian wrote:
Why didn't the Echo reporter ask the policeman what law the 'under age drinkers had broken because as I understand it a 16 yr old can lawfully drink alcohol when ordered with a meal and can lawfully drink alcohol supplied by a parent.

I know the police now have the power to 'confiscate' alcohol from those under 18 but all that teaches these young people is that the police can rob them with impunity.
No it doesn't, it teaches them (provided they have been brought up to know right from wrong) that if they are underage and they buy alcohol they run the risk that the Police will remove it from them and destroy it.

Only an idiot would provide their child with alcohol to drink completely unsupervised.
[quote][p][bold]Madadrian[/bold] wrote: Why didn't the Echo reporter ask the policeman what law the 'under age drinkers had broken because as I understand it a 16 yr old can lawfully drink alcohol when ordered with a meal and can lawfully drink alcohol supplied by a parent. I know the police now have the power to 'confiscate' alcohol from those under 18 but all that teaches these young people is that the police can rob them with impunity.[/p][/quote]No it doesn't, it teaches them (provided they have been brought up to know right from wrong) that if they are underage and they buy alcohol they run the risk that the Police will remove it from them and destroy it. Only an idiot would provide their child with alcohol to drink completely unsupervised. laboursfoe
  • Score: 2

9:01pm Wed 14 May 14

Homshaw1 says...

This is a "one off" publicity stunt. I know from personal experience that the police avoid charging underage drinkers.
This is a "one off" publicity stunt. I know from personal experience that the police avoid charging underage drinkers. Homshaw1
  • Score: 3

10:29pm Wed 14 May 14

NOTODDEN says...

Madadrian wrote:
Why didn't the Echo reporter ask the policeman what law the 'under age drinkers had broken because as I understand it a 16 yr old can lawfully drink alcohol when ordered with a meal and can lawfully drink alcohol supplied by a parent.

I know the police now have the power to 'confiscate' alcohol from those under 18 but all that teaches these young people is that the police can rob them with impunity.
Bizarre
[quote][p][bold]Madadrian[/bold] wrote: Why didn't the Echo reporter ask the policeman what law the 'under age drinkers had broken because as I understand it a 16 yr old can lawfully drink alcohol when ordered with a meal and can lawfully drink alcohol supplied by a parent. I know the police now have the power to 'confiscate' alcohol from those under 18 but all that teaches these young people is that the police can rob them with impunity.[/p][/quote]Bizarre NOTODDEN
  • Score: -13

9:28am Thu 15 May 14

oliver james says...

Police need to address the streets (ie) Burnside Road it's like Woodstock , kids off there nuts every night .
Police need to address the streets (ie) Burnside Road it's like Woodstock , kids off there nuts every night . oliver james
  • Score: 12

9:51am Thu 15 May 14

Madadrian says...

Homshaw1 wrote:
This is a "one off" publicity stunt. I know from personal experience that the police avoid charging underage drinkers.
There is nothing to charge them with. They have not actually broken any laws
[quote][p][bold]Homshaw1[/bold] wrote: This is a "one off" publicity stunt. I know from personal experience that the police avoid charging underage drinkers.[/p][/quote]There is nothing to charge them with. They have not actually broken any laws Madadrian
  • Score: 17

12:14pm Thu 15 May 14

Lucy91 says...

South Park and Green Park are just big gathering area for drunken school children in the evening now.They then spill out onto the streets in big gangs fighting and vandalising property.

My poor grandmother lives on Grange Road and is terrified when it gets dark.And its no good calling the Police-they don't bother turning up.Why don't we just close these parks in the evening?
South Park and Green Park are just big gathering area for drunken school children in the evening now.They then spill out onto the streets in big gangs fighting and vandalising property. My poor grandmother lives on Grange Road and is terrified when it gets dark.And its no good calling the Police-they don't bother turning up.Why don't we just close these parks in the evening? Lucy91
  • Score: 24

10:22pm Fri 16 May 14

spragger says...

It really is sad to see all these underage people without any parents ..
What's that
They do not care?
It really is sad to see all these underage people without any parents .. What's that They do not care? spragger
  • Score: 0

6:28pm Sat 17 May 14

Voice-of-reality says...

Another sensationalised piece of non reporting with the 'bogeyman' of sexual predators thrown in for good measure.
The more you tell young people they cannot do something the more alluring it becomes. The idea that it is also acceptable to destroy other people's property is obviously also another 'entirely reasonable' lesson that the police are teaching these kids.
Another sensationalised piece of non reporting with the 'bogeyman' of sexual predators thrown in for good measure. The more you tell young people they cannot do something the more alluring it becomes. The idea that it is also acceptable to destroy other people's property is obviously also another 'entirely reasonable' lesson that the police are teaching these kids. Voice-of-reality
  • Score: 13

3:12pm Sun 18 May 14

johnny_p says...

Voice-of-reality wrote:
Another sensationalised piece of non reporting with the 'bogeyman' of sexual predators thrown in for good measure.
The more you tell young people they cannot do something the more alluring it becomes. The idea that it is also acceptable to destroy other people's property is obviously also another 'entirely reasonable' lesson that the police are teaching these kids.
Im not sure the term "sexual predators" is entirely appropriate in this article. But just as with adults, drinking depresses your normal ability to assess and reject danger or situations which you would normally shy away from. If teenagers are drinking they are more likely to have sex with someone, or unprotected sex. But unlike adults aren't able to deal with the consequences.

But let's face it- we've all sneaked a couple of tins of lager down to the park and had a drink with friends after school as kids. The difference is when we did it we didn't cause trouble, vandalise property or start fighting.

This South Park/Green Park thing is now out of control and I fear something very unpleasant is going to come out of it because of the Police's reluctance to deal with it. I also agree with the poster above who said that these parks should be shut late when it's dark.

The Echo should get some reporters down there and see for themselves what's happening. This is all going to end in tears.
[quote][p][bold]Voice-of-reality[/bold] wrote: Another sensationalised piece of non reporting with the 'bogeyman' of sexual predators thrown in for good measure. The more you tell young people they cannot do something the more alluring it becomes. The idea that it is also acceptable to destroy other people's property is obviously also another 'entirely reasonable' lesson that the police are teaching these kids.[/p][/quote]Im not sure the term "sexual predators" is entirely appropriate in this article. But just as with adults, drinking depresses your normal ability to assess and reject danger or situations which you would normally shy away from. If teenagers are drinking they are more likely to have sex with someone, or unprotected sex. But unlike adults aren't able to deal with the consequences. But let's face it- we've all sneaked a couple of tins of lager down to the park and had a drink with friends after school as kids. The difference is when we did it we didn't cause trouble, vandalise property or start fighting. This South Park/Green Park thing is now out of control and I fear something very unpleasant is going to come out of it because of the Police's reluctance to deal with it. I also agree with the poster above who said that these parks should be shut late when it's dark. The Echo should get some reporters down there and see for themselves what's happening. This is all going to end in tears. johnny_p
  • Score: 8

8:14am Tue 20 May 14

somethinginsidesostrong says...

I think the Police need to crack down on under age none insured BOY RACERS, who particularly show off , Hang out/Speed out at Morton Park. I think they particularly choose the Mc Donalds venue of Morton Park to amuse and entertain the Police Officers in their Morton Park Office. That is one of the shoppers deterrant after 5 p . m. dont stop their fun no matter how much outside of the law they are.
I think the Police need to crack down on under age none insured BOY RACERS, who particularly show off , Hang out/Speed out at Morton Park. I think they particularly choose the Mc Donalds venue of Morton Park to amuse and entertain the Police Officers in their Morton Park Office. That is one of the shoppers deterrant after 5 p . m. dont stop their fun no matter how much outside of the law they are. somethinginsidesostrong
  • Score: 2

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