Hampshire & Dorset Police Target World Cup Trouble

18 June 2018, 06:59

World Cup

Ahead of England's first game tonight - football fans in Dorset are being warned against causing drunken trouble during the World Cup.

Police say they're working closely with pubs and bars, as well as targeting drink-drivers.

The force says incidences of alcohol-related violence often increase during the summer months, especially when there is a large sporting event taking place.

Detective Chief Inspector Craig McWhinnie said: 

"Most people just want to enjoy the football and support their teams. We just want to remind people that alcohol is not an excuse for bad behaviour and we will be taking a robust stance in dealing with any perpetrators of violent crime and domestic abuse."

Police say they're working closely with partner agencies, bars, pubs and social clubs to help them prepare for the tournament, to make them aware of their responsibilities and to encourage people to drink responsibly.

DCI McWhinnie added: 

"During the World Cup there is increased potential for drivers to still be over the limit the morning after as some of the matches are scheduled in the evening, and people may be drinking later than they usually would.

"We are reminding people to be sensible, not get too carried away and to drink responsibly. Please don't drink and drive as you could lose your licence, your job or even take a life - it's simply not worth the risk.

"We will also be monitoring incidents and arrests both here and in Russia linked to the football, with a view to applying to the courts for football banning orders where appropriate.

"Those in the UK who had an existing football banning order have already been prevented from leaving the country until the Russia 2018 has ended."

Hampshire Police tell us they'll be using a dedicated fleet of Domestic Abuse cars to patrol the county. Ten officers will be on patrol during all England games, as there tends to be a rise in cases during summer tournaments.

Chief Inspector Mike Haines said: 

"While the World Cup is a source of sporting celebration, we also know the tournament leads to an increase in both alcohol related violence and domestic abuse.

"These additional officers will be on duty not only to be deployed to incidents of domestic abuse, but also to follow up domestic abuse incidents that other officers have attended.

"These follow up visits will enable our officers to spend more time with victims of abuse and help them with safeguarding, with contacting other agencies that can help them and working with them to make them and their homes safer.

"Our officers will also be able to continue the early investigation and gather the best possible evidence because they will have more time to dedicate to each case.

"These officers will also visit high risk domestic abuse victims and perpetrators already known to us to try to prevent further attacks taking place."

Additional officers will be on duty on World Cup Final day on 15 July, and the force will assess the need for additional resources for other matches as the tournament progresses.