Police crackdown on troubled street
Police have tried to quell residents’ concerns on a road they say is plagued by anti-social and criminal behaviour.
Greater Manchester Police spoke out after neighbours on Glebe Street in Leigh complained of a catalogue of serious issues there.
Allegations of groups of people threatening residents and carrying offensive weapons in public have been made along with reports of drug dealing and women engaging in sex work.
A meeting was recently held with unhappy locals, Wigan Council staff, politicians and police all attending.
And a camera has now been deployed in the area to try to catch offenders in the act.
Chief Insp Mark Coulson, of GMP’s Wigan district, said: “I appreciate that there may be an increased concern in the local community regarding these recent incidents and I want to reassure members of the public that we take these reports of anti-social behaviour extremely seriously and they will be thoroughly investigated.
“The aim of the meeting was to agree to a number of immediate and long-term plans to prevent further incidents and introduce better cohesion to the area.
“As part of the strategy the council have installed a rapid deployment camera on the Glebe Street junction with Prescott Street, which will allow us to monitor any anti-social activity.
“We have also increased our policing activity in Leigh, so if members of the public see a higher police presence and have any issues or concerns, I would urge them to approach officers and ask any questions they may have.
“Communities should be a safe space for everyone, and we understand that a perceived increase in anti-social behaviour is unsettling and upsetting for local residents.
“We have a key role to play in tackling this kind of behaviour and we will continue to work closely with the local council to prevent further issues.
“We hope that by the time of the next group meeting in October, we will have seen further progress.”
Some residents have accused police of not doing enough to clamp down on wrongdoing. Councillors acknowledged there are frustrations with the crime reporting system but urged residents to bear with it and to continue ringing 101 whenever they see something that alarms them.
Leigh MP Jo Platt has been working on the problems for 12 months now and said the fact residents were still experiencing problems clearly meant more needed to be done.
Two men from Glebe Street have now been instructed by Manchester magistrates to appear in front of a Bolton judge on September 30 after their arrests.
John O’Malley, 48, is charged with violent disorder, affray and possession of an offensive weapon while 19-year-old Tano Udila is accused of affray. Udila has entered no pleas while O’Malley indicated he will plead guilty to having the weapon and not guilty to the other two charges.