Police authorise dispersal zones for a safe Halloween in Southampton
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A number of dispersal orders have been authorised in Southampton to help keep the city centre safe over Halloween weekend.
Between 4pm on Tuesday 31 October and 2am on Wednesday 1 November, dispersal zones will be in place in the areas pictured, covering:
The Bitterne Park/Harefield area
Portswood Road, the precinct and surrounding areas
Southampton University and the surrounding areas.
Dispersal zones will be in place in the same areas between 6.30pm on Friday 27 October and 6.30pm on Sunday 29 October.
Additionally, a separate dispersal zone will cover the Thornhill area of the city between 5pm on Tuesday 31 October and 4am on Wednesday 1 November.
The dispersal orders, authorised under Section 34 of the Anti-social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act enables police to deal with any issues of anti-social behaviour in the directed area more effectively.
These orders give our officers the power to order a person to leave the area with no return within the specified time period. Those who refuse to comply with the order are committing a criminal offence and are liable for arrest.
Individuals who are aged under 16 will be taken be to their home address, and follow-up work will be done with parents.
We can extend the time the zones are in effect and can add further zones if necessary.
We have established these dispersal zones as part of a proactive drive to prevent antisocial behaviour occurring across Southampton during the Halloween period.
In addition, we will be utilising Section 60aa of the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994 if required, which allows an officer to require a person to remove any item believed to be worn for the purpose of concealing their identity. This helps us tackle those who we believe are out to commit anti-social behaviour and crime and we will use it as an option should we have concerns around anyone attempting to conceal their identity.
Acting Inspector Dean Marsh-Clasby from the Southampton North Neighbourhood Policing Team said: “We want to make sure everyone can enjoy the Halloween festivities in a safe environment.
“Hopefully we will not need to use these powers, but we will not hesitate to take action should it be needed.
“There are loads of activities and events going on for people to get involved in across the city, and we will be on patrol throughout Halloween weekend and on the day itself.
“Please do come and speak to us if you have any concerns or questions, and if you’re not sure what’s going on in the area we will be able to help signpost you to an age-appropriate activity.”