A closure order has been granted on a flat in Plymouth – next to another one that was closed earlier this week – following repeated complaints of anti-social behaviour, weapons, drunken behaviour and drug dealing.
Plymouth Magistrates granted a three month closure order on 3E Teats Hill after the court was satisfied that the tenant Steven Edsel-Ford had caused nuisance to members of the public, anti-social behaviour and there was evidence of drug dealing and weapons. The order, which also takes into account the anti-social behaviour of visitors to the flat, comes just two days after the neighbouring flat at 3F Teats Hill, whose tenant was Neil Ashley Wright, was also subject to a ten week closure order. Edsel-Ford was also ordered to pay £150 court costs.
Councillor Dave Downie, Cabinet Member for Safer and Stronger Communities for Plymouth City Council, said: “It is fantastic news that these two flats – which have caused local residents misery and grief due to the anti-social behaviour, drink and drug issues related to the tenants – have been closed by Magistrates. It sends out a clear message that we will not tolerate anti-social behaviour in Plymouth and also reiterates that the anti-social behaviour of guests and visitors of the tenants will also be dealt with.
“It is our 7th successful closure order at Plymouth City Council and we would like to thank Plymouth Community Homes and Devon and Cornwall Police for their support as it shows what can happen when everyone works together.
“But our biggest thanks must go to the local residents, who have shown great courage in coming forward to give evidence about the anti-social behaviour they have been experiencing. We are pleased to be able to work together with people in the local community to respond to their concerns in this way.”
Inspector Sally Hutchings, from Devon and Cornwall Police, said: “Today’s closure order highlights the determination of Devon and Cornwall Police to take positive action against antisocial behaviour when necessary. Police have shared residents’ concerns about these addresses for some time and have used new legislation to good effect to help those residents whose lives have been blighted by unacceptable antisocial behaviour.
“The new Anti-Social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act helps us build on the solid foundations we have in Plymouth and strong history of partnership working and we will continue to work jointly with the council and PCH to tackle any reports of problems. These closure orders show how working in partnership with the support of the community is so powerful.”
“Antisocial behaviour significantly impacts people’s quality of life and this can only be tackled by working with partner agencies and the residents themselves. If anyone is suffering similar problems within their neighbourhood we would urge them not to suffer in silence and to come forward to talk to police or report concerns anonymously trough Crimestoppers.”
Steve Ford, Head of Homes and Neighbourhoods for Plymouth Community Homes, said: “We work hard with our residents and partners to resolve any problems and a closure order is always a last resort for us when all other options have been exhausted.
“However, anti-social behaviour can blight the lives of residents and we are keen to make sure that all our tenants feel safe and happy in their homes.”