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Family suffer at hands of gang

PUBLISHED: 17:17 16 December 2008 | UPDATED: 09:26 11 August 2010

A TERRIFIED family is calling for more police on their street after a gang of youths have started attacking their home and hurling verbal abuse at them. The trouble began six weeks ago when three youngsters started loitering outside the property of Marion

A TERRIFIED family is calling for more police on their street after a gang of youths have started attacking their home and hurling verbal abuse at them.

The trouble began six weeks ago when three youngsters started loitering outside the property of Marion and Christopher Phillips in Frizlands Lane, Dagenham.

Mrs Phillips said: "If I go out there on my own to tell them off, they shout abuse at me."

He said that for a week the trouble ended, only to resume again with a larger gang.

Mr Phillips said this time there were seven or eight of them.

Her husband added: "They come up from the side pathways. They kick the shutters.

"Behind the shutters is a double glass window and a door, which has been damaged.

He added: "I'm on edge all the time, and worry that the situation could quite easily escalate into something very serious.."

Mrs Phillips said that last Monday (December 1), a group of seven to eight youngsters congregated opposite her home, when one of them picked up a piece of wood from the front garden of a neighbouring property and threw it at her house.

The police were called, but by the time they arrived, the gang had already disappeared.

The couple say they would like to see more community police patrolling the area at night to deter this type of anti-social behaviour.

Mr Phillips said: "It's a type of low level violence and crime. I feel we're wasting police resources to call them out for this."

Chief Inspector for Community & Partnership Andy Dunn said:

"Safer Neighbourhoods Teams cannot generally provide an emergency response service.

They are the local presence dealing with the concerns of the residents on their wards through long term solutions.

"If a crime is happening at the time, people should dial the 999 emergency number, not the Safer Neighbourhoods Teams.

"This sort of apparent anti-social behaviour is exactly what the SNTs were set up to deal with, and we are contacting Mr and Mrs Phillips to see what more can be done to assist them."

Gangs who made a nuisance of themselves at a Dagenham junction have been dispersed, thanks to extra police patrols.

The Post recently reported that anti-social behaviour had dropped dramatically at Martin's Corner since extra policing and anti-loiter lighting had been introduced.

Residents and shopkeepers said that hitting culprits with Anti-Social Behaviour Orders had also helped ease the problem.


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