Preston boy, 14, arrested for hurling stones at drivers on busy city roads
A 14-year-old has been arrested for allegedly hurling stones at cars driving along busy roads in Preston.
The child has been arrested on suspicion of criminal damage after he was detained by police following a foot chase through the city streets yesterday (Monday, March 9).
Police say the boy is believed to be one of a group of children who have been recklessly hurling stones at passing cars around Deepdale Road, New Hall Lane and Blackpool Road in recent days.
Yesterday, a driver in Edmund Street was hit by a stone allegedly tossed by one of the youths, causing damage to his car.
The driver reported the incident to police and patrols rushed to the scene to investigate. Lancashire Police said the report was one of "multiple daily calls" made to the force in the past couple of weeks .
Officers found a number of youths at the scene, who ran away, leading officers on a foot-chase through the streets. But one of them, a 14-year-old boy, was caught and detained in nearby Percy Street.
He was arrested for allegedly causing criminal damage to a vehicle before being released and referred to Lancashire Child and Youth Justice Service.
The city's taxi drivers say they are among those who have been targeted by the youths in recent weeks.
On February 22, a stone smashed through the back window of an Ashton Allied people carrier in Ribbleton whilst passengers were inside.
Ex-taxi driver and Ashton Allied manager Khalid Nakhuda said: "It happened near Preston Glades Care Home. Our driver said the stone was thrown by young kids aged about 12-years old. Thank God no one was hurt.”
Mr Nakhuda said he feared one of his drivers or customers might be seriously injured if the reckless anti-social behaviour is not tackled by police.
He added: "Something needs to be done before someone is seriously hurt."
PC Mark Bickley of Preston Neighbourhood Policing Team said: "These types of incidents are dangerous and could result in someone becoming seriously injured.
"Police custody is no place for a child, and we are appealing to parents to ensure their children are not becoming involved in antisocial behaviour leading to criminality.
"These problems are exacerbated by the Covid-19 restrictions which are being disregarded by young people congregating in groups to commit offences."
Lancashire Police said it has increased patrols around these areas and will not hesitate to arrest those youths found engaging in reckless and anti-social behaviour.
It said referrals will be also made to Social Services and has warned that young people detained by the police are at risk of receiving a criminal record.