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Ribbleton councillor tells of terrifying knife threat incident

Posted on - 19th July, 2023 - 11:25am | Author - | Posted in - Crime, Preston News, Ribbleton, Uncategorized
Councillor Pat Varty told of being threatened and lifted the lid on problems she and constituents faced

A Ribbleton councillor has told of a terrifying incident where she was threatened by a gang of youths with a knife.

Councillor Pat Varty spoke of her experience during a Lancashire Police and Crime Panel at Blackburn Town Hall on Tuesday (18 July).

Lancashire’s police and crime commissioner Andrew Snowden was outlining measures being taken to tackle anti-social behaviour and support victims.

Read more: Preston MET in Ribbleton, what’s on and when

Cllr Varty spoke about the incident which took place in a city park and also on the issues facing people living in Ribbleton.

She said: “I would just like to say as a victim of crime that 10 days ago that I was approached by 40 youths in my local park and threatened with a knife.

“I walked into a situation where I was talking to local constituents and unfortunately there was a big gang behind me going through the park.

“There was one right in front of me smashing two cars up. I was surrounded by these youths and I was threatened twice by a knife and one was put one to my neck.

“Under the circumstances I can’t agree with you with what you’ve said. I live right in the middle of these drugs gangs and they are very well known in the community.

“I have been helping all these elderly people that’s had horrendous anti-social behaviour .

“Some of them are in their late 80s and they have had their windows and everything smashed. I didn’t get a phone call from victims of crime. I had to ring them. Nobody supported me.

“It’s knocked my confidence and I don’t feel safe to be honest.

“I woke up last Saturday morning and they had smashed my CCTV. I have got a profoundly disabled son.

“The support’s not been there at all. It’s concerning really because sometimes you get people who are high up in authority and they say ‘Oh, this, this, and this is happening’.

“But when you’re in the thick of it it’s a completely different scenario. I just want to make people aware that if you live in it it’s completely different.”

Read more: Preston city centre to see increased police patrols due to new funding

Mr Snowden replied: “I completely agree with you. We know we have got a lot of work to do. What you should have got is a call from victim services.

“We will pick that up outside of the meeting. I’m more than happy to get an update on what the police are doing on those gangs.”

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