Clutha ar­sons and youth crime

Clutha Leader - - OUT & ABOUT - MARY-JO TO­HILL

In ad­di­tion to the Bal­clutha show­grounds sta­ble fire on Mon­day, po­lice have been in­ves­ti­gat­ing an­other sus­pected ar­son at the Cres­cent Rugby Club, Kai­tan­gata.

Se­nior con­sta­ble Tanya Grant said some­time be­tween Novem­ber 5-11, part of the grand­stand was set alight. Of­fend­ers broke wooden seats and used them to light a fire.

A small blaze ap­peared to have de­vel­oped, with the cul­prits throw­ing the burnt tim­ber out onto the grass be­low the stand. In­quiries were con­tin­u­ing into both fires.

In Bal­clutha, in late Septem­ber-early Oc­to­ber, po­lice ap­pre­hended a group of youths who had since ad­mit­ted to steal­ing keys and an as­sort­ment of other items from un­locked ve­hi­cles and prop­er­ties all over town, Grant said.

‘‘We know that a lot of the of­fences have not been re­ported to po­lice and there have also been items re­cov­ered, which we have been un­able to re­turn to their right­ful own­ers. Most of the re­cov­ered items were sets of keys or other small items.’’

Peo­ple who had prop­erty stolen dur­ing this time but did not re­port it or thought they had just mis­laid items that could have been taken from their un­locked ve­hi­cles, should con­tact the po­lice, who may have some of these items stored at the Bal­clutha sta­tion.

At Te Houka near Bal­clutha, a new black wheel­bar­row with silver han­dles was taken from the car­port of a Clutha Downs Rd prop­erty, be­tween Oc­to­ber 30 and Novem­ber 6.

At Mil­ton, over the week­end of Novem­ber 3-6, the old Woollen mill was en­tered, af­ter the of­fend­ers gained ac­cess by break­ing boards that cov­ered bro­ken win­dows. En­gi­neer­ing and elec­tri­cal work shops were en­tered but noth­ing taken, Grant said. How­ever, more win­dows were smashed dur­ing the en­try. The build­ing is cur­rently used by a va­ri­ety of oc­cu­pants.

On Novem­ber 7, a 70-year-old Bal­clutha man was picked-up for driv­ing with an ex­cess breath al­co­hol level of 1064mcg per litre of breath. He was for­bid­den to drive be­cause of the high level of al­co­hol in his sys­tem. Less than 24 hours later, the man was picked up again, and recorded a read­ing of more than 1000mcg.

He will be ap­pear­ing at Dunedin District Court on both charges, and a fur­ther charge of driv­ing with a sus­pended li­cence.

MARY-JO TO­HILL/STUFF

A sta­ble block de­stroyed in a sus­pi­cious fire at Bal­clutha be­ing de­mol­ished.

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