Edinburgh anti-social behaviour: Police say they have identified 10-20 young people over Morningside incidents

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Police say anti-social behaviour in Morningside has worsened in the past week, with further incidents including a child being hit by an egg. But they say they have identified up to 20 young people responsible, are close to completing their investigations and hope to charge individuals soon. Morningside Tory councillor Marie-Clair Munro spoke earlier this week about a fresh spate of thefts and anti-social behaviour which had hit the area, prompting her to report 10 incidents in a three-week period to police. This followed a previous outbreak of anti-social behaviour in October and November last year.

Much of the anti-social behaviour has been targeted at shops in and around Morningside Road.Much of the anti-social behaviour has been targeted at shops in and around Morningside Road.
Much of the anti-social behaviour has been targeted at shops in and around Morningside Road.

Now police local area commander Community Inspector Scott Casey has given Cllr Munro an update, highlighting a number of new incidents. He told her: "You may already be aware of a recent increase in ASB throughout the Morningside area in the past week. My officers have been conducting investigations and so far they have managed to identify a core group of around 10-20 young people.

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"The offences committed include vandalism to cars, graffiti, theft by shoplifting, assaults and breach of the peace. One of the assaults involved a young child being struck with an egg. Incidents such as these are completely unacceptable, and I fully understand the concern this will cause in the community.

"I hope to conclude most of the investigation in the coming days, after which officers will be tracing those involved and charging them at their home addresses in the presence of parents. I will be utilising bail undertaking conditions for those identified to be responsible for the most serious offences and this will give police the power to arrest and charge them should they breach these conditions. I will request that a condition is attached that prevents them from entering the Morningside/Bruntsfield areas."

Cllr Munro said the egg incident was "disturbing". And she said the issue of anti-social behaviour had been discussed Morningside community council on Wednesday evening.

"There were not only local residents, but businesses in attendance who were deeply worried about the situation. They were upset the behaviour has escalated again and they were concerned it not only makes it difficult for businesses who are trying to keep going in the difficult economic climate, but also walking around the area they are not feeling safe at certain times of the day, especially in the twilight hours when these young people are out and about being quite threatening and abusive.

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"However the police have been very pro-active and those at the meeting were very pleased to hear the police are not only tracing and tracking the individuals but are going to be going to their houses and doing what is necessary in front of their parents, which hopefully will put them off doing it again.

"People at the meeting have seen for themselves damage to cars and some of them were able to take photographs and video footage of cars being damaged and that was able to be given to the police to help with their inquiries. I would urge all residents to contact the police if they witness any such behaviour. I would add that the vast majority of young people in my ward are responsible and respectful citizens."