Street drinker hit in pocket by £2,330 court bill

Street drinking is often seen in the Market Cross area
Street drinking is often seen in the Market Cross area

A promised crackdown on street drinkers in Leighton Buzzard has led to one persistent offender ending up with a court bill of over £2,330.

The main problem centres around the Market Cross area, which Central Beds Council says it closely monitors from its CCTV control room in liaison with Beds Police.

Now Central Beds, in conjunction with the police and and town council, is taking action to stop drinkers being abusive and threatening other residents.

The focus of the partnership is to deal with nuisance caused by individuals drinking in the south of Central Bedfordshire, particularly those in Leighton Buzzard and Dunstable town centres.

Using new legislation under the Anti-Social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014, five Community Protection Notice Warnings have been issued to drinkers in Leighton Buzzard and ten to those in Dunstable.

Two of these warnings have been escalated to full Community Protection Notices and court cases have been prepared for breaching these notices.

In April at Luton Magistrates Court, Terry Strapp of no fixed address, breached his notice on five occasions in Leighton Buzzard and was found guilty in his absence.

Mr Strapp received a £300 fine for each of the five breaches, a £30 victim surcharge and full prosecution costs of over £800. A total cost to him of £2,330.

Central Beds Councillor Brian Spurr, Executive Member of Community Services said: “There is no place for this type of behaviour in our communities and working alongside partner agencies has delivered extremely good results and it should send a clear message to anti-social drinkers that we will not tolerate this type of behaviour.”

To find out more information or to report acts of Anti-Social Behaviour call 0300 300 8302 . Criminal behaviour should be reported to the police. This includes property being vandalised or being personally threatened. The 24-hour non-emergency number is 101.