West Midlands Police have increased patrols in Longbridge ward after three teenage boys were robbed of their mobile phones in two separate incidents in the area this weekend.
The first robbery took place at around 8pm on Friday 27th February in Frankley Beeches Road, Northfield, close to the Tesco store. Police were called by the mother of one of the teenagers. The lad said he and his two friends had been surrounded by a group of teenagers who stole his Samsung Galaxy S5 phone and a woolly hat.
A West Midlands Police spokesman said that officers have spoken to the boy and his friends and are actively pursuing a number of lines of inquiry.
In a second incident, three local teenage boys reported that they were surrounded by a group of around five teenagers in the car park of Gala Bingo at Rubery Great Park at around 5.30pm on Saturday 28th February. The group stole two iPhones and a bag from them.
The offenders in the second incident are described by the three friends as black and wearing dark clothes.
Staff at Gala Bingo looked after the boys until police arrived at the scene just a few minutes later.
Longbridge Neighbourhood Sgt. Raf Khan stressed that he is taking this matter seriously and will be increasing patrols in the area and utilising special powers to control Anti Social Behaviour.
Sgt. Khan said: “Over the last two nights we have had three robberies in the Great Park and on Frankley Beeches Road. Due to this we will be conducting ‘all out’ patrols in those and surrounding areas. We have also invoked what is called a Section 35 of the Antisocial Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014 Dispersal Power. This gives officers the ability to direct people out of certain areas if we believe they may contribute to ASB, Crime or disorder. If they do not leave, it is an arrestable offence.
“The effect for you, the community, is that you will see more of my officers concentrated in certain areas, patrolling and providing reassurance.” he added.
Anyone with information which may aid police investigating these incidents is asked to call 101 or the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111. If you witness a crime in progress, please call 999.
A spokesman for West Midlands Police said: “Robbery rates across the whole of Northfield remain unchanged compared with last year. Between April 2014 and January 2015 officers investigated 154 such crimes which includes incidents such as this, bank raids etc. This is the same number of robberies which happened over the same period the year before.”