First full Stalking Protection Order against a child in UK secured for family in Heywood

Date published: 01 May 2024

A teenager is believed to be the first child in the UK to receive a full two-year stalking protection order after harassing a family in Heywood.

Police say the teenager subjected a local family to a “prolonged period of harassment and threats” and disrupted this family’s daily life, causing them “significant distress.”

The order – which are typically used in domestic abuse cases involving adults – is thought to be first against a child in the UK after being secured by a Heywood PCSO.

Any breaches of this order would constitute a criminal offence and could carry a prison sentence in some circumstances. Stalking is “often” a pre-cursor to “some of the most serious crimes we deal with,” police said, “which can lead a long-lasting impact on victims.”

PCSO Jenny George, who led the action, said: “Getting a positive outcome for this family after what they have suffered has been extremely rewarding.

“Securing this full order has now safeguarded a vulnerable family from further harm at the hands of this individual. It is a testament to all the work we put in gathering the evidence over several months. The victims were truly at the heart of everything we have done.

“Civil orders can be a suitable alternative for securing justice for victims of offences such as stalking. Our team are keen to make use of them, where appropriate. It all feeds into the problem-solving approach we take, to ensure those in our local communities are not being repeatedly victimised.

“With SPOs, we can request prohibitions and requirements to protect the victims, but importantly, they also give the offender access to intervention and education programmes, aimed at stopping that behaviour from repeating.

“It’s important to remember that this perpetrator is still a child and although that doesn’t lessen the seriousness of the offences, the order and interventions offered will hopefully give them a chance to turn their life around before they reach adulthood.”

Anyone who thinks they are being stalked should report it to police straightaway. If you are in immediate danger, call 999, otherwise you can report online or call 101.

Alternatively, please reach out for support from the National Stalking Helpline:

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