England

Drunks get fine or course choice in Norfolk and Suffolk

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Media captionSupt Jon Dodman said he was confident the scheme would work

Drunk people in Norfolk and Suffolk are being offered the chance to go on a course rather than pay an on-the-spot £90 fine.

The police said the Alcohol Diversion Scheme would apply to people committing offences such being drunk and disorderly in public.

Instead of a fine, people would have to pay £45 to enrol on a drink awareness course run by the Druglink charity.

Norfolk and Suffolk Police said the scheme would be self-funding.

The forces said the three-hour course had already been run successfully by police in Devon and Cornwall, Derbyshire and Hertfordshire.

Supt Jon Dodman, from Suffolk police, said: "What they found is that once people understand the full implications of their behaviour and how it affects them and the rest of the community, they have changed their ways.

"I'm confident it will work, because 50% off the fine has got to be quite an attractive offer just to attend the course."

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