Police called as residents protest over 'sex offender' housed in community

Angry residents are staging weekly demonstrations amid claims an alleged sex offender has been housed in the area.

Thursday, 17th June 2021, 3:58 pm
Updated Thursday, 17th June 2021, 5:28 pm
Police were called on Wednesday evening

Around 40 concerned locals gathered outside flats in Musselburgh, on Wednesday evening.

The neighbours have been protesting peacefully in the street for the past three weeks and have vowed to carry on until he is moved.

A 66-year-old organiser, who wished to remain anonymous, said: “The man in question was moved in here by the council about four weeks ago.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

“We had no idea who he was until the following week.

“It was a complete shock as we had all welcomed him to the area but now I am terrified to even venture out my home.

“We are all pensioners around here and he is the last person we thought we would be sharing our twilight years with.

“We won’t stop until he is moved somewhere else by the council who have some serious questions to answer.”

Another resident, 71, added: “Most people around here are so scared of him now we know his past.

“I have several grandchildren but have had to tell them to stop coming to visit me while he is still in the area.

“It is very worrying but we won’t stop until we get rid of him.

“I know he has to live somewhere, but it should be in an appropriate area and not near to a beach and primary schools where there are lots of kids.”

Police officers attended the protest following a worried phone call from the man.

A Police Scotland spokesperson said: “Around 7pm on Wednesday, 16 June, officers were called to a report of a number of people gathering outside a property.

“Officers attended and the crowd dispersed.”

An East Lothian Council spokesperson said: “Public safety is of paramount importance and the council works closely with our partner agencies to ensure that Scottish Government guidance is followed when allocating tenancies and in relation to the safe management of neighbourhoods.

“Under Data Protection rules we cannot comment on specific cases.”