A partial closure order has been imposed on a house in Chester in response to persistent anti-social behaviour and drug use.
Over the past year officers have attended the address in Queens Avenue multiple times, to deal with persistent reports of drug use, anti-social behaviour and large groups of people gathering inside the house and blighting the community with bad behaviour.
The property is a house of multiple occupancy which is rented by a local charity and shared by a number of residents, some of whom are extremely vulnerable.
Officers have attempted to work with the occupants to help tackle the issues and stop groups from gathering at the address, but this has been unsuccessful.
Therefore officers from the Chester Neighbourhood Policing Team, in conjunction with the charity who rent the home, applied for a partial closure order under the Anti-Social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014.
Granted by Warrington Combined Court on Wednesday 24 June, the order makes it a crime for anyone other than the four tenants to be at the property for up to three months.
Police Constable William McMillan said: “Over recent months there have been numerous reports of drug related and anti-social behaviour connected to this address and the behaviour those who have been using the property has had a detrimental impact on the quality of life of local residents.
“Many of the people residing at this address are extremely vulnerable and I hope that this partial closure order will both help to protect them from potential exploitation, while at the same time provide reassurance local residents.
“I want to thank the local community for their cooperation and the information that they supplied during our investigation, which was crucial in us gathering the evidence needed to secure the order.
“I would also like to thank Chester Aid to the Homeless, who rent the address, who have also worked closely with us to help protect the residents and improve the quality of life for local residents.
“Following today’s result we will conducting regular checks at the house over the next three months to ensure that there are no breaches of the order and we’ll also continue working closely with local residents.”
If anyone is found to have breached it they are liable to be arrested and face up to six months in prison, an unlimited fine or both.
Inspector Emma Parry, from Chester Local Policing Unit, added: “The closure order is another example of our commitment to targeting those who undermine our communities and have a significant detrimental impact on the quality of life of local residents through unacceptable behaviour.
“Chester LPU will continue to focus their attention on people who are complacent with allowing their properties to be used for antisocial or criminal activity, and anyone who does will face the consequences of their actions.”
David Keane, Police and Crime Commissioner for Cheshire, said: “Drug related activity and anti-social behaviour can have a big impact on the local community.
“This closure order is just one example of the work that the local policing teams across Cheshire are doing to help reduce crime and improve the quality of life for local people.
“I would like to acknowledge the work of the officers involved in securing this closure order and I hope that it provides reassurance for those living in the area.”
Anyone who believes that the order has been breached is urged to contact Cheshire Police on 101. Alternatively, residents can report information anonymously to Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.