Calmer weekend with fewer incidents

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POLICE in South Yorkshire dealt with fewer incidents this weekend compared to the weekend before - despite rioting and looting fears.

Extra officers were on duty all weekend looking for signs of trouble and to offer reassurance.

But a message posted by police chiefs on Twitter said: “South Yorkshire has seen 200 fewer incidents this Friday compared to last week. Thanks for keeping the peace.” On Saturday the force said there were four fewer incidents than the Saturday before.

Bosses say a ‘combination of good sense and decency by the public, hard work and a tough stance by police, plus an element of good fortune’ resulted in South Yorkshire staying bother free.

Assistant Chief Constable Andy Holt said: “We are policing our communities as normal, ensuring, for example, people can socialise in the night-time or go to football matches and businesses can trade profitably.

“We are still assisting colleagues in London and Nottingham, but our priority is to keep South Yorkshire safe and we have the capability and capacity to respond to any level of disorder, if it should occur.”

He added: “We recognise local people have been very supportive of all those who’ve tried to keep disorder from our streets. South Yorkshire Police are touched by the overwhelming level of support we’ve had from our communities.”

Derbyshire Police chiefs also thanked the public for their support during what they described as a ‘challenging week for policing’.

The force dealt with a ‘small number’ of incidents of criminal damage, arson and anti-social behaviour and arrested a 17-year-old girl and 18-year-old man, from Brimington, on suspicion of conspiracy to commit violent disorder.

The force received around a third more calls than average last week, with many said to have been from members of the public passing on information and concerns about potential disorder.

n Deputy Prime Minister and MP for Hallam Nick Clegg spent a day touring Sheffield meeting agencies working with young people in the wake of the riots.

The Lib Dem leader was joined for his visit on Friday by the leader of Sheffield’s Liberal Democrat councillors group, Shaffaq Mohammed, who is also a local youth worker.

Mr Clegg said: “The fact our city has not seen rioting is testament to the Sheffield spirit. Praise must go to local youth workers, police and community leaders - their work is invaluable in helping local young people shun criminality.”