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Police officers will go undercover to catch sexual predators

Police officers will go undercover to catch sexual predators who grope revellers in packed clubs and bars in Bournemouth

  • Plain-clothed officers will be looking out for incidents of unsolicited advances
  • Such acts are deemed as sexual offences and uniformed officers will be called in
  • Clampdown comes after spate of sex attacks in the resort including a rape

Sexual predators who grope victims in clubs and bars may think twice after police officers announced they are going undercover to catch them.

Plain-clothed officers will be looking out for incidents of unsolicited advances and inappropriate touching, including bottom slapping, carried out by both men and women.

Such acts are deemed as sexual offences and uniformed officers will be called in to arrest suspects in Bournemouth, Dorset.

Earlier this summer, a teenage girl was grabbed in the sea near Bournemouth Pier and dragged out to deeper water where she was raped

The clampdown comes after a spate of disturbing sex attacks in the resort.

Earlier this summer, a teenage girl was grabbed in the sea near Bournemouth Pier and dragged out to deeper water where she was raped.

On August 3 a man grabbed a 17-year-old girl and tried to kiss her at the base of the zipline attraction on the pier.

Then on August 11 a man sexually assaulted two women as they entered the Pavilion Theatre in Bournemouth prior to a show.

In the neighbouring resort of Weymouth, a 16-year-old girl was raped and her friend sexually assaulted by two suspects on the seafront between 10pm and 11pm on August 14.

Inspector Darren Harris, of Bournemouth Police, warned potential predators that they will be watched.

He said: ‘We are committed to ensuring residents and visitors can have an enjoyable night out without the fear of being sexually assaulted.

‘This operation will enable officers to witness unacceptable behaviour first-hand and intervene quickly. There is no place in our community for this type of behaviour and it simply will not be tolerated.

‘Our message to anyone intent on engaging in sexual offending is very clear – you are being watched and you will be dealt with robustly.’

David Sidwick, the Dorset Police and Crime Commissioner, said the force decided to act now as Bournemouth’s booming night-time comity comes back to life following the lifting of coronavirus restrictions.

The clampdown comes after a spate of disturbing sex attacks in the resort

He said: ‘As part of my agenda around reducing violence against women and girls, I expressed views to Dorset Police on the need to address this particular issue in view of the reopening of the night-time economy.

‘Nobody should have to put up with any form of sexual harassment and the reopening of our night-time economy is not an excuse for subjecting people to unwanted attention.

‘Nobody should have to worry about being on the receiving end of intrusive behaviour in our pubs, bars and nightclubs and I want everyone who may have experienced or witnessed this to contact the police.’

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