Police statement following series of robberies in Portsmouth on Monday evening
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Police are investigating following a series of robberies in Portsmouth yesterday evening (Monday 22 May).
We received a number of reports of people being threatened, assaulted and having property stolen by three males:
At approximately 7.30pm, two 12-year-old boys had their bikes taken from outside the Premier store on the corner of Stubbington Avenue and Lyndhurst Road.
At 7.40pm a 31-year-old was assaulted on Kensington Road, suffering minor injuries. Nothing was taken but an attempt was made to steal his phone.
At around 8pm two 15-year-old boys were approached at Alexandra Park near to the Mountbatten Centre. Three males attempted to steal a mobile phone from one of the boys but other members of the public intervened. Shortly afterwards, at around 8.15pm, three males approached a 17-year-old boy in Alexandra Park and threatened him with a knife. They assaulted him causing minor injuries to his neck and head. Nothing was taken.
At approximately 8.05pm an 18-year-old man had Air Pods, a phone and jewellery taken from him on Mayfield Road. The man was threatened during the incident but not injured.
It was reported that at approximately 8.40pm a 12-year-old boy had his phone stolen near to the Mountbatten Centre. He was not injured.
A Police Community Support Officer who was deployed to the area following the reports was assaulted by one of the males, causing minor injuries to his face, arm, knee and hand.
The three males involved have been described as black or mixed race and were all wearing balaclavas/masks. Two of the males are reported to have been on bicycles, while one was on an electric scooter.
One of the males has been described as slim build, approximately 5ft 10ins tall and wearing black clothing a baseball cap.
A second male has been described as slim build, approximately 5ft 10ins tall and wearing a grey/charcoal coloured tracksuit and cap with a New York Yankees logo on the front.
This afternoon we have arrested a 16-year-old boy from Portsmouth in connection with these incidents.
We would like to reassure local residents that we take these reports extremely seriously and have a large number of officers investigating today.
Officers will also be increasing patrols across the city today and into the evening.
Portsmouth Chief Inspector Pete Smith said: “We fully appreciate how concerning this string of incidents will be to local communities and the distress that has been caused to the victims.
“I want to reassure all residents that we are doing everything we can today to investigate and identify and arrest those involved. Our detectives are across the city today following all lines of enquiry available. We will also have a number of officers, including our neighbourhood teams, carrying out dedicated patrols across the city. Please do come and speak to them if you have any questions, information or concerns.
“Finally, we are aware of speculation on social media regarding these incidents. While we understand that people want to share information, please try to avoid any online speculation, which can damage ongoing investigations, and instead report all information that you have to the police.”
Anyone with information about any of these incidents is asked to call 101 quoting 44230202557/Operation Blot. Perhaps you witnessed one of these incidents and have not yet spoken to police? Maybe you live in the areas mentioned or were driving through at the times of the incidents and have dash cam, Ring Doorbell or CCTV footage that may assist our enquiries?
We would also like to hear from anyone who may have been a victim of a similar incident last night and has not yet reported it to police.