Youths in court over threats at Salvation Army base

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Three youngsters have appeared in court in connection with an incident at Preston’s Salvation Army base, which operates the city’s vital foodbank scheme.

A 16-year-old boy who admitted using threatening behaviour, was given a two year conditional discharge but must pay a £10 surcharge.

A 15-year-old girl has pleaded guilty to religiously aggravated threatening behaviour and will be sentenced on Tuesday.

A 14-year-old girl has pleaded to religiously aggravated threatening behaviour but failed to appear at court on Friday and a warrant has been issued for her arrest.

The youths, who cannot be named due to their ages, have previously appeared before Preston Youth Court after an alleged incident at the Salvation Army base on Harrington Street, Preston.

During the ordeal, on May 6, the church’s Captain Alex Cadogan, who runs the food bank, was allegedly subjected to religious taunts and insults.

It is also said a window was broken and a uPVC door damaged during the incident, though charges of damage were dropped against one of the girls.

Capt Cadogan was too distressed to speak about the incident and police said he had been left shaken.

Preston police hate crime team dealt with the investigation.

The Salvation Army is known for its work with some of the city’s poorest and more vulnerable people. It offers help to the elderly, the young, offenders, drug addicts and blind and disabled people, provides food and shelter for the homeless, and operates food distribution centres.

The Preston branch administers the vital food bank service for hundreds of needy families in the city.