THE last Friday before Christmas, known as ‘Black Friday’, is traditionally the busiest night of the year for the emergency services. The Cheadle Post & Times was invited on patrol with Cheadle Police to see exactly what they have to deal with. Here reporter Abbey Buxton describes some of the incidents she witnessed while on patrol.
AS soon as I arrived at Cheadle Police Station for the start of my shift with PC Dave Stubbs and SC Ash Littler at around 6pm, I was straight into the action.
An Immigration Warrant was carried out at Cheadle Kebab House in Chapel Street, where a 19-year-old Turkish National was arrested for illegally working.
At the same time officers were called to deal with a disturbance in Bank Street, Cheadle, where a drunken 43-year-old male from Cheadle was causing a breach of the peace and refusing to leave a premises.
He was arrested to prevent a further breach of the peace, as officers had been called out to deal with the same man numerous times in the past few days for the same offences and being drunk and disorderly in public.
Shortly afterwards officers were notified of a road traffic collision on the A50 Draycott Island involving two vehicles.
While patrolling the anti-social behaviour hotspots around Cheadle, we stopped three youths in the market place in High Street who were searched under the misuse of drugs act; drug paraphernalia was found, but no drugs.
Almost immediately afterwards we were called to assist urgently to officers dealing with a pub fight in Uttoxeter’s Market Square and headed over there under blue lights.
But as we reached Tean we were informed that the officers had regained control of the situation without the need for further resources.
While we were on our way back to Cheadle, we were advised of reports of dangerous driving in Asda car park, Well Street, where he then headed to again on blue lights.
We then patrolled Well Street, as there had been reports of damage to numerous vehicles, and Morrisons and Asda as there had been reports of shoplifting.
This was followed by a patrol of Freehay where we found a heap of rubbish had been fly-tipped by the quarry (pictured).
We then patrolled Hillside Industrial Estate, followed by Forsbrook and Blythe Bridge and onto the A50, where we saw a taxi believed to be illegally carrying five passengers, and followed a car believed to be driving without due care and attention.
On returning to patrol in Cheadle, officers tended to a wounded man in High Street, who had fallen and hit his head badly on the pavement and waited with him until a paramedic first responder arrived.
While on patrol we also witnessed a serious assault occurring outside Babylon Kebab Shop, High Street, Cheadle.
The officers swiftly intervened and detained a 42-year-old male at the scene. As well as dealing with the persons involved.
Officers also had to provide first aid to the victim who was a male who had suspected serious head injuries for around 40 minutes before the arrival of ambulance.
Delays to the Ambulance attending was due to the demand they were under at the time.
Robert Finney aged 42, from The Green, Cheadle, has been charged with an offence under Section 4 Public Order Act and bailed to appear at North Staffordshire Justice Centre on January 19.
In the Staffordshire Moorlands from approximately 5pm on Friday to 5am on Sunday there was around 79 call outs for police assistance.
PC Dave Stubbs, who is the Cheadle Town Neighbourhood Officer and also the Vice Chairman of Staffordshire Police federation, invited the Cheadle Post and Times out on patrol on what is traditionally the busiest night of the year.
He said: “The increase in demand on Policing resources, due to Christmas, starts from Mid December. There’s a well-planned operation already in place to meet this demand and this operation runs all the way through to New Year’s Day and the community will see a greater Police presence throughout this period.
“Many of your Police Officers are sacrificing time with their families and having short notice shift changes and extended shifts to ensure the communities of the Moorlands are kept safe during this festive but busy time of the year.
“We are also being assisted by our colleagues from the Special Constabulary who are giving up their time for free to support us and ensure we can meet the increase in demand”.
“The biggest demand on Police resources, not only in the Moorlands but across the county, comes from people who over indulge in alcohol and there is often an increase in alcohol related violent crime, disorder and domestic incidents.”
PC Stubbs added: “We want to help create a safer environment for all those people who want to go out, enjoy themselves and celebrate Christmas and New Year but we will also deal firmly with those who overstep the mark and will not tolerate the minority of people who can’t handle their drink and cause problems and disorder, start fights and resort to violence.
“In Cheadle Police Officers have also been out and about conducting high visibility patrols to provide reassurance and also plain clothes patrols to target those people who wish to come into the area to commit dishonesty type offences and other crime on the town centre and supermarkets.
“These patrols begun on the 1st December will continue throughout the Christmas Period and into the New Year.”