Police chiefs have warned against a repeat of the “significant disorder” that accompanied England’s World Cup victory over Sweden, saying there were 387 incidents across the country leading to 70 arrests.
They said the “worrying level of mostly alcohol-related disorder” stretched forces’ resources on Saturday and compared it to the trouble-free celebrations enjoyed by England fans in Russia.
Police accepted it was only a minority of those celebrating England’s 2-0 win in the quarter-final, taking the Three Lions to their first World Cup semi-final since 1990, who were involved.
Among incidents listed by police were:
- Significant damage to an ambulance in London Bridge.
- Two people arrested in Northampton, where “crowds caused disturbances, resulting in road closures while officers dealt with the disorder”.
- A road blocked by hundreds of people and flares set off in a Leicestershire street.
- People clambering on to the roofs of buses and blocking roads in Southampton.
- Celebrations in Nottingham that led to “extensive criminal damage” to a taxi.
- People climbing on to bus shelters and vehicles in Bridlington, Hull and Cleethorpes.
- A man who jumped off a double-decker bus and crashed through a bus shelter roof.
Mark Roberts, the head of football policing for the National Police Chiefs’ Council, which represents 44 forces across England and Wales, said: “Saturday’s match was a great day for England and it’s right to celebrate it. The vast majority of fans do that without committing criminal and antisocial behaviour.
“It is incredibly disheartening to see more than 300 incidents of alcohol-fuelled disorder from a minority of mindless individuals.
“This behaviour has real consequences. Numerous roads across the country were blocked, stopping emergency vehicles getting to people in need, and an ambulance is now off the road while being repaired.
“Shops were damaged, people were abused and assaulted and others climbed on buses and cars, causing damage to vehicles and in some cases, themselves.”
Roberts compared the excellent behaviour by England fans in Russia with those back home. “This is in stark contrast to the fans out in Russia, whose behaviour, apart from a couple of minor incidents, has been great,” he said.
Police resources are stretched because of increased demand, a situation exacerbated by the warm weather and a big mobilisation for Donald Trump’s visit to the UK.
“There is absolutely no excuse for this type of senseless behaviour. Emergency services resources are already stretched,” said Roberts.
“We want people to celebrate and enjoy themselves, but not at the expense of law-abiding fans and emergency services’ resources.”
World Cups and major football tournaments can lead to spikes in some types of criminal offending.
Across England and Wales, there have been 1,086 football-related incidents since the tournament began in mid-June, with 226 domestic abuse-related incidents and 230 arrests.
England play Croatia on Wednesday evening, with police on the alert for any further trouble.
guardian.co.uk © Guardian News & Media Limited 2010
Trump Says He’ll Make a ‘Major Announcement’ Saturday Afternoon About Shutdown, Border
Trump Administration Separated Thousands More Migrants Than Previously Known
The Trump Administration separated thousands more migrant kids from their families at the border than it previously acknowledged, and the separations started months before the policy was announced, according to a federal audit released Thursday morning.
“More children over a longer period of time” were separated at the border than commonly known, an investigator with the Department of Health and Human Services inspector general’s office told reporters Thursday morning.
“How many more children were separated is unknown, by us and HHS” because of failures to track families as they were being separated, he said.
HHS officials involved in caring for the separated children and reunifying families estimated “thousands” of additional children are separated at the border, the inspector general said.
The report sheds new light on the Trump administration’s efforts to deter border crossings by separating migrant families. House Democrats who’ve condemned the separations as inhumane have vowed to investigate the administration’s handling of the policy and its health effects on separated children, and the inspector general said additional investigations are in the works.
The inspector general report said some family separations continued, even after President Donald Trump in June 2018 ended the policy amid uproar and a federal court ordered his administration to reunify the families. The June 2018 court order called on the administration to reunify about 2,500 separated children in government custody. Most of those families were reunited within 30 days.
However, HHS received at least 118 separated children between July and early November, according to the report. DHS provided “limited” information about the reason for those separations. In slightly more than half of those cases, border officials cited the parent’s criminal history as a reason to separate the families, although they did not always provide details. The court order requiring reunifications said family separations should only occur if border officials could specify when parents posed possible dangers to children or were otherwise unfit to care for them, the inspector general noted.
Federal investigators said they had no details about how many of the “thousands of separated children” who entered the care of HHS before the June 2018 court order had been reunited.
“We have no information about the status of the children who were released prior to the court order,” Maxwell told reporters. [POLITICO]
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