CHILDREN as young as 12 were spotted drinking on the streets during a clampdown on underage boozing.
Peterlee Police joined forces with Durham County Council street wardens, and Councillor Dennis Maddison, in patrols of Horden which saw 17 antisocial behaviour notices being handed out to youths.
Coun Maddison said: “I’ve never seen it as bad as that. I counted about 120 kids out drinking. It was mayhem.
“The police and street wardens are doing a fantastic job but it’s out of hand. There were kids of 12 and 13 absolutely legless and some were getting abusive.
“We have to find out where the alcohol is coming from.”
Licensing chiefs are warning off-licences, and people who buy booze for youngsters, they are clamping down on underage alcohol sales to combat a rise in street drinking in the warmer weather.
Police can check “lock-codes,” which tell officers where alcohol was sold. Anyone found to be supplying youngsters with booze can be prosecuted and receive an £80 fixed penalty notice. If the case goes to court the maximum penalty is a £5,000 fine.
Anyone with concerns about antisocial behaviour can call Durham Police on 0345 606 0365.