Hertsmere has one of the lowest youth offender rates in the county MyLocalNews can reveal.
In a freedom of information request to Hertfordshire Constabulary, only eight teenagers under 16 were arrested between April 1, 2017 and April 1, 2019. That number is tiny compared to the 191 arrested in Three Rivers, Dacorum, St Albans and Watford.
One offence took place in Radlett and seven occurred in Bushey. They include; three affray’s, two robberies and two assaults. The ages of the offenders were 15 and 14.
A police spokeswoman said: “The majority of youth crime is dealt with out of court and we try to take a practical approach to achieve both justice for the victims of crime and to intervene early and prevent young people from progressing further into the criminal justice system through diversionary work.”
A recent example of that work was Watford FC the Children and Young Persons Gangs and Schools Team hosted an intervention and aspiration day at Vicarage Road on June 8 for young people at risk of being drawn into gangs.
They got to take part in a range of activities designed to get them working in teams in order to help them build confidence and encourage positive outlooks.
The Gangs and Schools team will be running events throughout the year, details of which will be shared via their Twitter channel: @HertsCYP.
Be on the look-out for warning signs that could suggest a child may be involved in gang activity:
- A child or young person going missing from school or home
- Significant changes in emotional well-being or significant decline in school results/performance
- The use of drugs and alcohol
- A young person meeting unfamiliar adults or a change to their behaviour
- Relationships with controlling or older individuals or associated with gangs
- Receiving excessive amounts of texts or phone calls and/or having multiple mobile phone handsets
- Acquiring money or expensive gifts they can’t account for
- Suspicion of self-harm, physical assault or unexplained injuries
- Becoming isolated from peers or social networks
- Carrying weapons
If you have any concerns about a young person displaying some of these signs you can report information online at www.herts.police.uk/Report or speak to an operator in our Force Communications Room via web chat here: www.herts.police.uk/contact
You can also call the non-emergency number 101 and ask for Herts Police.