Police deal with ‘small pockets of disorder’

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Thames Valley Police have confirmed that there were further small outbreaks of disorder across the Force area overnight.

The main areas where police saw problems were Reading, Oxford, and Slough. Only five arrests were made in Milton Keynes - all were made in the Bletchley area, including what people believe to be the ring leader who co-ordinated the disturbances.

Police also confirmed that two petrol bombs were thrown in Eaglestone, one at officers, the other at a car belonging to a member of the public.

But with rumours rife on social networks about the possibility of disturbances, police attended scenes in large numbers prepared to deal with situations before they had the chance to get out of hand.

Deputy Chief Constable Francis Habgood said: “There were small pockets of disorder in some areas of the Thames Valley last night. We were prepared in advance to deal with any potential disturbances and officers responded quickly and effectively. Arrests were made and the groups involved were dispersed at an early stage.

“We would like to thank the community for working with us and providing information about potential incidents. We ask that communities continue to keep us informed of any further groups gathering or acting suspiciously so we can respond quickly.

“I would also like to pay tribute to our Special Constabulary. More than 200 Specials made themselves available for duty yesterday and more than 100 of those were deployed across the force area.

“Thames Valley Police will continue to provide a highly visible police presence and keep the public informed via our website and Twitter channels.”

In Milton Keynes a group of between 30-50 young people passed though Beanhill, Coffee Hall, West Bletchley, Central Bletchley and Mount Farm until they were dispersed in Bletchley, where a number of business premises had been damaged. The incidents began at about 5pm in the Coffee Hall area. There followed a robbery in Queensway and two minor assaults, neither resulting in serious injury. During the course of the group’s progress through Milton Keynes there were 13 offences of criminal damage that have been reported, mainly to shop windows and business premises. Police responded robustly to the situation using a number of public order trained officers and incorporating the use of the Force helicopter. Five people have been arrested in connection with public disorder – two 24-year-old men, a 19-year-old man, an 18-year-old man and a 17-year-old boy. After the arrests the group began to disperse and by 10pm the city was quiet.

> For a full round-up see the Milton Keynes Citizen tomorrow (11/8).