Edinburgh Bonfire Night: Niddrie riots see four teenagers charged and 55 dispersal orders issued
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Bonfire Night riots in Edinburgh, which saw masked youths hurl fireworks at crowds and attack police officers, have resulted in four teenagers being arrested and charged.
Police were called to several areas in Edinburgh, including Niddrie, Ferry Road Drive, Drylaw and Sighthill, over the weekends following reports of youths wreaking havoc in residential streets. In Niddrie, a riot broke out which saw a main street blocked by a bonfire and fireworks thrown near crowds of people. A flammable substance was also thrown at a police car.
A police officer was injured in the same area after teenagers threw bricks at a van. Two other officers were injured in Sighthill, when their vehicle’s windows were smashed. Both were taken to Edinburgh Royal Infirmary.
A total of 55 dispersal warnings were issued over the weekend, with 18 on Friday, 14 on Saturday and 23 on Sunday. Police Scotland has also confirmed that on Saturday, four teenagers were charged and reported, with one subsequently having been released. These arrests were made as part of Operation Crackle, the Edinburgh based police operation for the weekend. Also in action was the nation police operation, Operation Moonbeam.
Assistant Chief Constable Tim Mairs, gold commander for Operation Moonbeam said: “Our initial analysis of the incidents arising on Bonfire Night show that, for the overwhelming majority of the country, people enjoyed the occasion safely and responsibly. However, in some areas, particularly Edinburgh, various individuals have shown blatant disregard for the safety of the public and the emergency services and have actively targeted police officers and firefighters during the course of their duties.
“This behaviour is completely unacceptable and will not be tolerated. I want to make it abundantly clear that considerable follow-up inquiry will be conducted in relation to all of these incidents, utilising all resources at our disposal to identify those responsible and bring them to justice. Do not think that just because you evaded police on the night, that we won’t be knocking on your door in the near future.
“I would ask anyone who has information relating to the offences observed last night to contact police via 101 so we can investigate appropriately. What the events of last night demonstrate to me is the importance of having a robust frontline policing service that can be readily supported by national and specialist colleagues when required. Similarly, working in partnership with other emergency colleagues and local authorities is equally important to ensuring we are deploying the correct level of resource to the right areas at the right time.
“All of those who were on duty during Bonfire Night showed exceptional professionalism and dedication to protecting communities from harm during extremely difficult and challenging circumstances. I am grateful for all of their efforts.”