Patrols stepped up in wake of rioting

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POLICE patrols have been stepped up in Hemel Hempstead following the rioting that has torn through UK cities over the past four nights.

At least six officers were patrolling in Marlowes yesterday to provide a visible deterrent to would-be troublemakers and give reassurance to the public.

The move comes after 13 people were arrested in Watford on Tuesday night for criminal damage and public order offences after officers swooped on a violent mob damaging cars in Exchange Road.

Herts police spokesman Nicola Lawrence said: “We do have increased patrols keeping an eye on things. It’s nothing that people should be concerned about. It’s high visibility for reassurance and if there are any problems.”

Hemel Hempstead MP Mike Penning has condemned the riots, which have spread from London across the country in the wake of the fatal shooting of Mark Duggan by police officers in Tottenham.

“The total disrespect for peoples’ lives, homes and livelihoods is unacceptable and will not be tolerated,” he said. “I am appalled and shocked at the behaviour and in particular the ages of some of those taking part. I back calls for parents to take responsibility and ensure their children are off the streets at a sensible time tonight.”