Police: ‘Halloween should not be an excuse for anti-social behaviour’
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As the county gears up for Halloween, a Suffolk police sergeant has warned that the celebration “should not be an excuse for anti-social behaviour”.
October 31 is traditionally a busy night for Suffolk police and the force is urging trick-or-treaters to act responsibly and respect others in the community who may not wish to take part.
The force says that while it recognises that the vast majority of people will enjoy Halloween responsibly, officers will deal with any anti-social behaviour appropriately.
Residents are being urged to display Halloween posters in their homes to let trick-or-treaters know if they are welcome or not.
Last year, Suffolk police recorded 57 anti-social behaviour (ASB) calls between October 31 and November 1 and of these calls, 11 related to Halloween.
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In 2017, 71 calls were recorded as ASB over the same time period and four were Halloween-related.
MORE: Sheer magic! Pumpkin fun as babies and toddlers join Halloween celebrationsSteve Wright, community engagement and crime reduction sergeant at Suffolk police, said: "Halloween can be a fun night for all and we want to ensure it's safe for everyone as well; Halloween should not be an excuse for anti-social behaviour.
"If you're planning to go out trick-or-treating, please stay with your friends and only knock on doors of residents that you know want to take part in the evening.
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"Officers will be out conducting patrols during the run up to Halloween and while we know the vast majority of people we encounter will be acting responsibly and considerately to others, there may also be those people who get carried away.
"We would like to remind you that anyone that is deliberately scaring people or throwing eggs will be not be tolerated and those caught will be dealt with appropriately.
"While there was an increase in calls relating to Halloween anti-social behaviour last year, we want to reduce the number so we'd ask people to follow our safety advice which includes never going trick-or-treating alone, staying in well-lit areas, and not going inside the houses of strangers."
MORE: Review: We (just) survived Scaresville... do you think you could handle it?Two posters are available to download from the Suffolk police website to indicate whether homes or businesses welcome trick-or-treaters or not.
Tim Passmore, Suffolk's police and crime commissioner, said: "Trick-or-treating can be great fun, and I don't want to spoil that fun, but I would ask that those taking part keep themselves safe and be respectful to others.
"For those on the receiving end of trick-or-treaters, particularly the old and vulnerable, it can be quite an upsetting experience.
"My message to anyone planning to go trick-or-treating is, by all means enjoy yourselves and have fun, but please give some thought to those who don't want to join in. The safest option is to only visit people you know."
Anyone with concerns can call 999 in an emergency, or 101 for non-emergency assistance.
Alternatively, useful information about any incident can be reported via the Suffolk police website.