Published: 13:54, 05 December 2019
| Updated: 14:22, 05 December 2019
A woman has been fined £300 for answering the call of nature in the street.
Ashford Borough Council brought in Public Space Protection Orders (PSPOs) across Ashford three years ago, restricting anti-social behaviour in certain areas - such as urinating or drinking alcohol in public.
The authority's lawyers have now secured convictions against two people found to be breaking these orders.
Bernadette Gillan was accused breaching the Ashford Urban PSPO - covering the town centre - by urinating on the ground on March 27.
Gillan, who did not appear at the Folkestone Magistrates Court hearing, was found guilty and fined £300.
She was also ordered to pay a victim surcharge of £30 and a contribution towards the council’s costs of £300.
The second person, Callum Randall, was suspected of breaching the Singleton Lake PSPO by entering the water on April 23, which is prohibited unless in an emergency situation.
He was also charged with fishing at the lake without having the necessary rod licence on June 25.
Also not appearing at his hearing, Mr Randall was found guilty on both breaches and ordered to pay the fixed penalty of £300 per offence.
In addition to the £600, he was ordered to pay a victim surcharge of £30 and to pay a contribution towards the council’s costs of £500.
Sheila Davison, head of community safety and wellbeing at Ashford Borough Council, said: “Taking action against anti-social behaviour is important and PSPOs give us and the police the power to deal with these type of activities immediately.
“Often, such incidents may simply require us to point out that this behaviour is unacceptable but, when they become persistent, council officers and the police will not hesitate to take enforcement action.”
Police inspector Jason Atkinson, of Ashford Community Safety Unit, said: “Anti-social behaviour can be detrimental to a community, it is not tolerated and we urge people to report any such incidents to the police or council officers.
“Kent Police supports the council’s use of the PSPOs, and under the Community Safety Partnership our officers work together to ensure appropriate action is taken whenever concerns are raised.”
More by this authorCharlie Harman