Young offending spike is 'alarming' says Isle of Man chief constable

image captionGary Roberts' annual report will be laid before Tynwald later this month

There has been an "alarming" increase in the number of young people arrested in the Isle of Man, the chief constable has said.

In his annual report, Gary Roberts wrote that the 22% increase on 2016-17 was "proof positive" the island's youth justice team (YJT) was "now failing".

Mr Roberts blamed cuts in resources for an increase in youth offending.

Three of five specialist worker posts in the YJT, which is led by the Isle of Man Constabulary, were cut in 2016.

A special health advisor and social worker were withdrawn from the team by the Department of Health and Social Care.

The BBC has contacted the Manx government for a response to Mr Roberts' claims.

The number of young people arrested during 2016-17 was 132, rising to 161 in 2017-18.

A total of 445 referrals were made to the YJT in 2017-18.

In the 12 months to 31 March, 250 individuals were referred to the team at least once.

At least one young person was referred 28 times within those 12 months.

The Chief Constable's annual report will be laid before Tynwald later this month.

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