Police crack down on drink-fuelled crime in Bolton town centre
POLICE are cracking down on drink-fuelled crimes after a spike in the number of town centre arrests.
Officers say they want a “vibrant economy rather than a violent economy” in the run-up to Christmas — and their work aims to reduce the amount of arrests.
Extra police from patrols outside the town centre are being drafted in to increase the number of officers on the street at the busiest times.
Last weekend police in Bolton town centre arrested 27 people in the evening — 10 people on Friday and 17 on Saturday.
The figures are usually lower with about six people being arrested on a Friday night with Saturdays proving to be busier.
Sgt John Boyce, from Bolton’s partnership and licensing team, said: “The problems are similar to most other large town centres.
“We want people to come here because it’s a safe place and we need to work towards that.
“We want Bolton to be a vibrant night-time economy rather than a violent one.
“We want premises to be more strict about serving drunk people in their bars, refuse entry to those that are already drunk and not to run irresponsible promotions.”
The arrests on Friday included people being drunk or disorderly, one for breaching an order to leave the town centre notice and four assaults. On Saturday the arrests comprised mainly of people who were drunk or disorderly along with assaults and someone found in possession of cannabis, a Class B drug.
Twenty-one people were issued with direction to leave notices at the weekend — the notices can last for up to 48 hours and aim to remove people from the town centre when they are at risk of committing disorder.
PC Andy Vernon, also from Bolton’s partnership and licensing team, said police were taking positive action by taking police from other duties to patrol the town centre.
The issues at the weekend were said to centre around excessive drunkenness with some people getting involved in fights in takeaway and taxi queues.
Officers will also be promoting personal safety by warning people of the possible consequences of drinking too much, such as one punch could be fatal.
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