'Snow rioters' banned from Dartford town centre

Six boys who caused havoc after heavy snowfall have been banned from entering premises in a Kent town centre.

Police said several boys "ran riot" in Dartford, throwing snowballs with rocks and stones at pedestrians, vehicles and shopkeepers on 20 and 21 January.

The 14 and 15-year-olds were arrested at their homes. Four were reprimanded and two were given final warnings for affray.

They were banned from entering any premises in the centre for six months.

A Kent Police spokesman said more arrests were planned.

'Mean-spirited'

Det Con Richard Allingham, the investigating officer, said: "This was a disturbing and prolonged incident that brought real fear to residents, traders and security staff in the town.

"There is a difference between some good-natured snowball fights and deliberate, mean-spirited disorder, and this incident was a determined effort by a few to cause havoc and fear to the public trying to go about their normal business."

Sgt Karen Radford, from the force's community safety unit, added she hoped the force's action would discourage the perpetrators and their peers "from behaving in a similar fashion in the future".

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