'Arrest them and fine the parents, this is serious' - Police backed over warning to ASB youths in pandemic

Thousands of people have shared a warning issued by police in Yorkshire warning parents that their kids will be arrested if they gather in large groups to commit antisocial behaviour during the coronavirus pandemic.

Sunday, 22nd March 2020, 8:39 am
Updated Sunday, 22nd March 2020, 9:44 am

The warning was put out by North Yorkshire Police on Saturday and in it, the force said they had been dealing with reports of 30 to 40 youths gathering in public.

Officers reiterated that large groups should not be gathering during the coronavirus pandemic, due to guidance around the need for social distancing, and added that anyone committing offences would be arrested.

The statement said: "Following reports last night of groups of kids reaching 30-40 in number causing ASB, we ask parents to act responsibly and enforce the government's advice on social distancing with their children.

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Thousands of readers have backed the police stance on arresting antisocial youths during the coronavirus pandemic

"We know these are difficult times but we must protect the elderly and vulnerable in our community. If the government's advice is not followed, these measures will last longer. The ASB caused last night will not be tolerated and NPT will arrest your kids if offences are committed."

-> Join the Yorkshire Evening Post's new coronavirus news and info group hereYorkshire Evening Post readers responded in their thousands to back the force's stance and called on 'irresponsible' parents to do more to stop their kids going out.

Martina Burdis said: "Good God why aren’t parents stepping up to the mark and acting responsibly- this is DEADLY serious and this is completely out of order."

Charlotte Smith added: "There's a group of 13 teenagers outside Blacks shops, Seacroft. Why are parents not keeping them in? Are people that naive to think it doesn't matter to them!!"

Ros Rawson: "Feral school kids were shoplifting in Sainsbury’s when I was there yesterday. Security got them I’m pleased to say."

Shane Roberts: "Arrest them and fine the parents. Won't happen again."

Lynne Keoghan: "I don't think kids realise they are not immune to this deadly virus, that doesn't have a cure as yet. This is no joke, they should take the government's advise very seriously."

James Palmer: "Well Italy said it’s started to a high rise off young being infected now so as a parent is hope you read this and keep them inside."

Marcia Sykes: "Any kids found hanging around in groups police should be aloud to round up and make them work on the wards of hospital where virus is doing meal hand out and cleaning they would soon see how dangerous this virus is they wouldn't be doing it again after seeing someone that is dying from it."

Andy Holder agreed with Shane Roberts' stance, adding: "The kids not only need arresting but also the irresponsible parents"

Michaela Denise Hoffland: "It’s shocking how many people are just carrying on as if it’s just a normal Easter holiday"

Andy Shaw: "We are all wasting our times if all public places are banned but kids can play and hang around in groups. It's defeating the object."

Guy Swinburn: "There's groups of kids over the whole of the country that cause antisocial behaviour already and before this. the law needed to get tougher on them years ago. There wasn't much for us to do as kids growing up either, but we never behaved like they do nowadays."

Donna Sullivan: "About time ... the parents can't or won't control them."

Kris East: "We’re in a state of emergency, if they don’t do what they’re told then bang em up. Zero Tolerance is needed towards causing the spread of a lethal virus."

Tina Bailey: "There’s kids everywhere. What is wrong with people. STAY HOME."

On Sunday morning, Prime Minister Boris Johnson called on people not to visit their mum this Mother's Day because the number of coronavirus cases is 'stark and accelerating'.What is the current coronavirus advice?

On Saturday pubs, clubs and bars were closed to help prevent large gatherings and reduce the risk of the virus spreading, as far as possible

Anyone with a cough or any symptoms is being asked to self-isolate, while the advice to everyone is to minimise social contact as much as possible, and to only travel if absolutely essential.

Workers have been told to work from home if they can and to avoid going out in public other than for exercise, while still maintaining at least three metres' distance to others.

Everyone should also be washing their hands for at least 20 seconds with soap and hot water.

Those in vulnerable groups, such as those who need a flu jab or are over 70, are being told to be extra cautious and also isolate themselves.