POLICE in Sunderland are stepping up patrols to tackle anti-social behaviour.
It follows concerns about large groups of youths gathering in Ayton in Washington.
Officers are warning those involved extra patrols are being carried out and action will be taken against them.
Washington Neighbourhood Inspector Paul Stewart said: “It’s come to our attention that large groups of youths are planning on gathering in Ayton with the intention of causing disorder and I would like to inform them that this type of behaviour is completely unacceptable and will not be tolerated.
“Officers will be carrying out patrols in the area and will take action against those who are causing a nuisance. I would also like to remind anyone who thinks it is a bit of harmless fun to join these individuals that in some instances it can be a public order offence just by being present at the time and they could also see themselves arrested.
“Large groups gathering can create anti-social behaviour and disorder and causes concern amongst our communities, it can have a detrimental effect on people’s lives and can be intimidating. We continue to take action to tackle the issue, any young people who are stopped and spoken to about their behaviour are later visited at home.
“In the majority of cases, we find parents are not aware of the type of behaviour their children have been involved in and I’d urge parents to make sure they know where their children are going and what they’re doing when they’re out.”
Anyone concerned about issues with anti-social behaviour in their area should contact their local neighbourhood policing team on 101 ext 69191 or by visiting their local neighbourhood page of the Northumbria Police website www.northumbria.police.uk