Police plea over seafront boy racers

PUBLISHED: 16:22 24 August 2008 | UPDATED: 09:33 10 June 2010

SUNDAY, AUGUST 24: EXMOUTH police inspector Jez Capey has responded to suggestions that stopping 'boy racers' on the esplanade was solely the responsibility of the police. He also questioned the town council's failure to back the possible closure of Queens Drive as a way to

EXMOUTH police inspector Jez Capey has responded to suggestions that stopping 'boy racers' on the esplanade was solely the responsibility of the police.He also questioned the town council's failure to back the possible closure of Queens Drive as a way to stop the scourge.At the end of June town councillors considered the possibility of a part time closure order.After a debate a closure was not supported, but they suggested closing off the drive 'by barrier' as and when necessary to gain that section of the road for safety reasons.But, in a letter to the town council, Insp Capey said it 'was not clear' how the council proposed to monitor the area, who would be responsible for locking of the gates after they had been closed and who would remove illegally parked vehicles.He said: "With the vast demand on police time and resources already in place, it is not practicable for the police to take responsibility for any of those tasks."Insp Capey also questioned the suggestion by some councillors that 'keeping boy/girl racers' under control was solely 'a police matter for which they already had sufficient powers'.He said: "The issues affecting the sea front involve those such as nuisance, disorder, littering, anti-social behaviour, dangerous and inconsiderate driving and safety concerns. These issues are very much part of the local council responsibilities... (including town councils)."The (Crime and Disorder) Act introduces a partnership approach to local crime reduction."He added: "I assure you that the police continue to resource the seafront and where appropriate utilise enforcement as a tool to keep incidents at a minimum."However he did concede that, after a decade of 'failing to fully combat the problem', other measures were needed. Insp Capey has been invited to the next available town council meeting to talk about crime reduction.

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