Lancashire

Young vandals get police home visits in Lancashire

Known persistent vandals - some as young as 10 - are being targeted in a Lancashire town to try to reduce the criminal damage offences.

Police in Fleetwood have identified the top 50 offenders, aged between 10 and 21, and have begun paying them regular visits at home.

Operation Magic was launched after a rise in vandalism and anti-social behaviour in the last quarter of 2010.

Incidents include smashed windows, bottle-throwing and car damage.

'Alcohol-fuelled'

During the campaign, two 16-year-old boys, one from Thornton and one from Rossall, have been given fixed penalty notices, with fines of £80, in connection with four incidents of criminal damage.

Pc Ian Lester, of Lancashire Police, said: "No one likes criminal damage - it can be expensive for the victim to put right and can be unsightly, creating an eyesore for other residents who live near by.

"The vast majority of this criminal damage is mindless vandalism carried out by young people, whose boredom breeds bad behaviour.

"Some of it is also alcohol-fuelled, so we are also clamping down on underage alcohol sales and proxy sales - where adults buy alcohol for children.

"It has been promising to see that residents are fully supportive of the operation and are coming forward to tell us who has been carrying out the criminal damage."

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