Respite for neighbours subjected to anti-social behaviour

We have successfully obtained a closure order for premises in St Paul's Road, Hemel Hempstead, following anti-social behaviour over a two-year period.

Local residents were subject to anti-social behaviour after various people started visiting the address, which was rented by Zoe Rochester. Reported problems included bricks being thrown at the premises, the smell of cannabis and people attending the address with weapons.

Some of the visitors were wanted by the Police and would try to evade arrest when police attended. A vehicle associated with the address was also causing nuisance by being driven dangerously up and down the road on a regular basis.

The anti-social behaviour escalated on 18 May 2018 when neighbours called the Police at approximately 1.45am after hearing screaming and shouting at the premises. Police and ambulance services attended to find an individual with a knife wound. Neighbours were left extremely anxious about the armed response and dog units attending the address.

One neighbour said, “We are very concerned about what’s happening at this property and we need peace and quiet and a safe environment to raise our family.”

Working together, our Anti-social Behaviour and Legal teams and the Police gathered evidence in relation to the premises. We then applied for a premises closure order at St Albans Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday 30 May. Miss Rochester appeared in court to contest the application but the evidence presented by the Council satisfied the court, and a full closure order was imposed.

Cllr Neil Harden, Portfolio Holder for Community and Regulatory Services, said, “Thank you to the neighbours who bravely came forward to help bring peace back to their community. We will not tolerate anti-social behaviour, which has a detrimental impact on the quality of life for local residents.

“We will always take the most proportionate action to provide residents with peaceful enjoyment of their homes.”

Detective Inspector Craig Flint, from the Dacorum Local Crime Unit, said, “This operation has been a well-coordinated approach from all partners and sends out a strong message that this kind of behaviour will not be tolerated.

“We will continue to work with our partners and do everything in our power to deal with those who cause misery to others living in their local community. If you are concerned about the activities of your neighbours, please report it.”

The premises is now closed for three months.