IslingtonTribune

The independent London newspaper

Dispersal order is used at Highbury Fields

Police used special powers after residents complained about drug use and harassment from youths

16 June, 2017 — By Emily Finch

REPORTS of drug use and harassment of residents by large groups of youngsters prompted police to issue a dispersal order for Highbury Fields over the weekend.

Signs detailing the order, which gives police the power to make people leave a designated area if they are suspected of being disorderly, were placed on fences around the football pitch. It was in force between Friday at 6pm and 6pm on Sunday.

Highbury East Police said: “The dispersals were put in place after we received calls from residents about large groups hanging around the football pitch harassing and intimidating residents in the area, by tripping up passers-by in the street, playing football in the street, kicking the ball at windows and interrupting legitimate football games to ‘take over’ the pitch.

“There was also reports of drug use by groups around the fields and the football pitches in particular. We have also had reports of mopeds driving recklessly around the fields, possibly linked to phone snatches.”

Officers said they do not have further dispersal orders planned but will continue to use them if they receive further complaints of anti-social behaviour. The order followed reports of a woman being chased near Highbury Fields in Aberdeen Park last Friday. Officers were called at 2.45pm and but no suspects were found. The woman escaped without injuries.

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