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Last Updated: Monday, 22 December, 2003, 13:05 GMT
Police step up marina patrols
Police will be focusing on marina areas in Sunderland as part of a high-profile campaign to tackle seasonal crime.

Officers from Northumbria Police's Marine Unit will be carrying out a series of patrols in the North Dock area and Sunderland Marine Activity Centre, in Roker.

It is part of the force's Freeze Out campaign which is running from 15 December to 18 January.

The patrols come after concerns from residents about large numbers of youths gathering in the area, thefts from boats at the marina and incidents of cars being damaged.

Pc Neil Pattinson, from the Marine Unit, said: "We will be carrying out high-profile patrols in the area whether it is by foot, boat or a road vehicle.

High-visibility

"Members of the public are telling us there have been some problems with large numbers of youths congregating in the area.

"There can be between 40 and 50 of them and although they may not be committing crimes, it can be worrying for local residents.

"Our advice is that if they do go down there to meet with their friends, to do so in small numbers and be considerate to other people.

"There have also been a number of minor crimes in the area recently. Through high-visibility patrols we aim to reduce crime in the area and increase public reassurance."

The Marine Unit, is based at Viking Park, Jarrow, South Tyneside, and provides diving and marine support for Northumbria, the neighbouring forces of Durham and Cleveland, and other agencies.




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