Derry: Call for more police in Creggan Burn Park

Burnt tyre Image copyright Mickey Cooper
Image caption Tyres and pallets have been burnt in the Creggan Country Burn area in recent days

Extra police resources are needed in the Creggan Burn Park area of Londonderry following anti-social behaviour, according to a politician.

Pallets and tyres have been burnt in the area in recent days.

Residents have also told BBC News NI that young people have been drinking alcohol and in their gardens late at night.

A PSNI spokesperson said they are aware of ongoing issues in the area.

Sinn Fein councillor Mickey Cooper said: "I have been contacted by a number of angry residents.

"They are at their wits ends following several incidents in the parkland over the last few days," Mr Cooper said.

"They have complained to me that there is simply not enough police resource's being directed into the area whilst groups of young people area gathering and setting fire to pallets, destroying the green space and causing a general nuisance.

"I fully understand that the police may be under pressure with resources but it's vital that they are about whilst incidents like this are taking place.

"Young people are also coming in from different parts of the city."

Mr Cooper has also called on local businesses to store pallets more securely. He said groups of young people are regularly seen in the area on the lookout for pallets.

'Urinated in my garden'

A man who lives near Creggan Burn Park told BBC News NI he finds young people in his garden on a regular basis.

"The good weather brings them out and they feel like they can do what they want," he added.

"I have found a number of glass bottles in my hedge and the smell of smoke from burning tyres is a disgrace.

"Three teenage boys have also urinated in my garden over the past few nights.

"Local police officers need to be in the area more. That's the only way they'll be caught."

'Evidence is being gathered'

A spokesperson from the PSNI said: "The support of local people, community and voluntary representatives, and particularly the parents of those youths frequenting the area, are essential ingredients to help improve the quality of life for the local residents.

"Police will deal with any offending behaviour in a robust manner, and where action does not appear to be taken at the time for tactical or operational reasons, evidence is being gathered which is then used to identify those involved.

"Officers have increased patrols in the area."

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