Police chiefs dealing with reports of parties, youths gatherings and off-road bikes
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Police chiefs across Staffordshire are reinforcing the message for people to stay at home wherever possible this weekend to stop the spread of Covid-19 and help to save lives.
While the vast majority of people across Staffordshire continue to follow the Government guidelines there have been reports across the county of planned parties, groups congregating and off-road bikers.
Chief Inspector Clair Langley, area commander for East Staffordshire Neighbourhood Policing Team, said the vast majority of people are being really supportive and following social distancing rules but there have been some incidents where people have broken the rules.
“We have had to speak to youths in Shobnall Fields and Kingsdale Croft and also men gathering in cars on the Derby Road.
“We’ve had to break up a street party and stop a planned fancy dress party at an address in Burton. We’re here to work with our community and most people have been really supportive but we will take action where required. It’s is so important that people do not become complacent and continue to follow social distancing to prevent spreading the disease to family, friends and people in their community.”
Chief Inspector Mark Thorley, area commander for Staffordshire Moorlands, has spoken to motorists from areas as far afield as Sheffield, Birmingham, Nottingham and even London.
“People are tempted to visit the Moorlands because it’s a beautiful place, but the message is simple: please stay at home and help us stop the spread of Covid-19. You’ll be welcomed when the lockdown is over.”
In Stoke-on-Trent South Neighbourhood Policing area officers have dealt with groups gathering in local parks, while patrols in south Staffordshire have prevented teenagers meeting in groups in Wombourne.
Newcastle officers have dealt with youths riding on mopeds in groups, while Cannock officers have checked on licensed premises and have worked with local authority partners in trading standards advising publicans against lock-ins.
Officers in Tamworth have made three arrests following a series of 12 pub break-ins in the town during the lockdown.
Two men have been jailed for 12 months respectively for spitting at and assaulting officers in incidents in Cannock and at the Royal Stoke Hospital. Another man was jailed for six months for spitting at officers in Stafford.
Staffordshire Police Chief Constable Gareth Morgan said: “We want to thank the vast majority of people in Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent who have been brilliant and followed the government guidelines which are designed to stop the spread of Covid-19, protect the NHS and save lives.
“We don’t want a tiny minority to undo all the efforts and sacrifices already made by so many people to stop the spread of this disease and to save lives. We all recognise that this is a difficult time but it is truly a community effort and each one of us has a vital part to play.”