Trespass notices helping Waimate

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Waimate Police having the ability to issue trespass notices on council-owned land has been helping to prevent damage in the community, Waimate Police Sergeant Mike van der Heyden says.

At its June 17 meeting, the Waimate District Council passed a motion to allow police to issue trespass notices on council-owned or occupied land.

Sergeant Van der Heyden said police requested this due to ongoing problems with youth in the area.

“It was due to a couple of incidents where police have attended to youths congregating in areas and causing damage on council-owned property.”

Being able to serve immediate notices on the spot, instead of having to go to council first for permission, has been helping to prevent further damage to the town, he said.

“If people who are renowned for getting into mischief are kept out of areas that have a high risk of getting damaged, the amount of damage being caused will be reduced.”

However, the decision to keep the trespass notice enforced remained with the council and police would only be serving the notices when necessary, Sergeant Van der Heyden said.

It was generally council-owned land and schools that got the most damage, he said.

By RUBY HARFIELD