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Police in Camden give unruly party goers a ‘Red Card’ and send them off the field

December 5, 2012, 1:44 pm

Alcohol related crime can often rise throughout the holiday season as the public celebrate Christmas and the New Year. In readiness for the festivities this year and to help reduce crime, Camden police officers have been issued with a “D2L” – a “Direction to Leave” booklet.

The Violent Crime Reduction Act 2006 provides officers with a power to issue a direction to an individual, who is aged 16 years or over, and in a public place, to leave that area. The order or ‘Red Card’ will prohibit their return to a specified area for up to 48 hours.

The officer will decide the area from which the person is banned and in which direction they must go in order to leave the area. A person who refuses to accept, or who is found to have breached, a D2L, is liable to be arrested and charged, facing a fine of up to £2,500.

Borough Commander Richard Tucker said: “Come and enjoy, safely and responsibly, what Camden has to offer the festive party goer. However, be warned, that the police will have a zero tolerance approach this year to alcohol related crime and disorder.

“If my officers have reason to suspect that a person is likely to cause or contribute to crime or disorder due to alcohol, they will be told to leave the area, or face the prospect of arrest.”

Camden has the fourth largest night time economy with lots of people coming to enjoy a night out, particularly over Christmas and New Year. Nearly 50% of all violent offences in Camden are alcohol related.

By enforcing these powers under the Violent Crime Reduction Act officers hope to prevent crimes from occurring and reduce this figure over the festive season and throughout 2013.

Last weekend, 30 November/1 December, 26 tickets were issued in Camden.

Chief Inspector Penny Mills, Neighbourhood Policing, said: “Camden has a vibrant nightlife, which we want everyone to enjoy. However, low level disorder such as urinating in the street, rowdy behaviour, and acting aggressively towards another member of the public, blight the lives of those living locally. This will not be tolerated and officers will issue a distinctive red ticket ordering offenders to leave the area. The strategy is aimed at preventing the midnight drunk from becoming the 1am suspect, or the 2am victim. This is a preventative measure to deal with alcohol-related crime and disorder. It’s a scenario the police see all too regularly.”

Detective Sergeant Kieron Tiddy, of Camden Police’s Licensing Unit, said: “We will enforce this power robustly and appropriately across Camden. Issuing potential troublemakers with a D2L before they go on to commit substantiated offences will make the streets of Camden safer and prevent crimes from taking place. Our main nightspot areas of Camden Town and Holborn are served by a comprehensive TfL night bus service, so any person given a D2L should be able to get home safely before landing in further trouble with the police. We will also be working with licensees to reduce the opportunity of drunkenness.”

Councillor Abdul Hai, Cabinet Member for community safety, Camden Council said: “The first weekend of the D2L scheme has shown that the police and council working together can take immediate positive steps to make our streets even safer. I am pleased that local officers are making good use of the powers available and taking a zero tolerance approach on those who seek to disrupt the enjoyment of others. Our message is simple – drink responsibly and enjoy the festive period.”

The use of the D2L ‘red card’ will not be limited to just for the night time economy. All uniformed officers will have an option to use it during daylight hours.

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