Falmouth volunteers to tackle anti-social behaviour

People in a Cornish town are being asked to help reduce anti-social behaviour by patrolling the streets.

The Falmouth Street Watch initiative has the backing of Devon and Cornwall Police and already operates in 19 other force areas in the UK.

After training, volunteers will go out in pairs with mobile phones and wearing high-visibility jackets.

They can call for help or try to intervene in anti-social behaviour.

Neighbourhood Police Sergeant Gary Watts told BBC News that volunteers would be the "eyes and ears" of the police and local community.

Fully insured

The scheme has secured £1,000 of police funding and will be officially started in the next few weeks.

It will be a first for Devon and Cornwall and will focus on the Gyllyngvase area where low-level crime is a persistent problem.

Once launched, there will be 15 police-checked volunteers who will be fully insured by Street Watch, the national organisation behind the scheme.

So far, seven people have come forward to take part in the initiative.

Although they would not have any police powers, residents would patrol on summer evenings to tackle issues such as graffiti, littering and under-age drinking, Sgt Watts said.

If the pilot is successful, it could be rolled out in other towns across the force area.

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