Published: 11:00, 30 October 2017
A notorious drunk and abusive woman who urinated in public and threatened a shopkeeper has been slapped with a town centre ban.
Tsige Simmons, who has been described by police as "an eccentric character" has become well known around Folkestone.
Police said her problems with alcohol led to her being abusive to people, begging and generally being anti-social and have now secured a court order to put a stop to her behaviour.
The 42-year-old, of Marine Terrace, Folkestone, is renowned in the Old High Street area after several incidents prompting complaints to police.
On one occasion she was laying in the middle of the street and urinating in public.
She has now been banned by magistrates from being in The Old High Street, entering Beach Street, Fish Market or The Stade except to use the public toilets and having an open container of alcohol anywhere in Shepway except when on licensed premises.
Simmons appeared at court last Tuesday (October 24) when she was issued the criminal behaviour order.
Police applied for the order after she was convicted of threatening a shopkeeper with violence when they asked her to stop lying in the street.
She admitted the offence - which took place on January 8 - and was ordered to pay a £50 fine and £50 compensation to the victim.
If Simmons breaches the order, which is in place for two years, she could land herself in prison for up to five years.
The ban is already having a "positive impact" on the area, a Folkestone police officer said.
PC John Weller said: "Tsige Simmons is an eccentric character who I do not believe to be a bad person, but her issues with alcohol cause her to do and say things that are completely unacceptable.
"Both myself and other members of the community have tried our best to help her over the past year but the time has come where she needs to start helping herself.
"Criminal behaviour orders are not issued on a whim and only apply to those people who cause significant harm to an area.
"Her absence has already had a noticeably positive impact so I am pleased that the courts agreed with our view that she should not be allowed to continue with her abusive behaviour.
"I would be delighted if she can spend the next two years addressing her personal issues so she can return to the area without causing such problems."
Criminal behaviour orders ban an individual from certain activities, places and can also make them address their behaviour issues. They are imposed after a person is convicted of a criminal offence.
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