Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Prime Minister on Youth Crime plus other effects

Brown pledge to beat youth culture Manchester Evening News, April 1st

GORDON Brown has vowed to root out guns, gangs and knives in a bid to end teenage yob violence. Speaking in the wake of the brutal killings of student Sophie Lancaster and father Gary Newlove, he said his government was doing `everything in its power' to make people feel safer.Mr Newlove was attacked outside his Warrington home after confronting a gang of teenagers about vandalism. His head was said to have been `kicked like a football'.Sophie Lancaster, 20, and her boyfriend Robert Maltby were attacked by a gang in a Rossendale park - both were left in a coma and she later died.

Mr Brown said that the government's policy of neighbourhood policing was intended to create a visible presence on the streets, but on top of that, expert cops would take the lead on what he called these `difficult and heinous crimes'.He said it was right to have high-profile policing on the streets as a deterrent."As for these terrible crimes of violence, we are doing everything in our power to root out guns, gangs and knives," he told the M.E.N."We will take action against pubs, clubs or hotels selling to underaged people, or allowing them to drink, so that people generally can feel safer."There must be a presumption that people who carry knives are prosecuted." Mr Brown said new contracts would be drawn up between local people and police, giving residents more say on how anti-social behaviour and drugs are tackled.Mr Brown and Home Secretary Jackie Smith kicked off Labour's local election campaign, announcing an increase in neighbourhood police schemes.Shadow Home Secretary David Davis called this `a gimmick' and the Lib Dem's Chris Huhme said the answer was to put more police on the beat.

In Rossendale there is a move to stop youth drinking in parks as a result of
Sophie's death. Why now after the trial? Why not 6 months ago?
Call to ban alcohol in parks after Sophie's murder
This Is Lancashire, UK - 30 Mar 2008

It seems it may have been appeals by local media which helped in the naming of the acccused after the trial:
'Goth' murderers named thanks to court appeal by media
HoldTheFrontPage.co.uk, UK - 31 Mar 2008

In Burnley Sophie's death and another recent murder involving teenagers has lead to questions over park safety and new plans for improved safety.

Security measures planned for parks Burnley Express, April 1st
Are Burnley's parks safe? Burnley Express, 31 Mar 2008

Kerrang has very busy comment news on the Sophie trial.

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