Police hunt for catapult attackers

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Police are hunting yobs responsible for firing ball bearings from catapults in a series of shocking random attacks across Fleetwood and Thornton.

Sixteen separate incidents have been reported, the latest on Monday night, in which ball bearings were fired at a window of a house in Radcliffe Road in the port.

Police are now asking for the public’s help in tracking down the culprits before someone is hurt.

Sgt Chris Sanderson, from Fleetwood Police, said: “We are just waiting for that break to find out who is responsible.

“We are trawling through CCTV, and we are asking anyone who has been affected by this, or knows who is doing it, to contact us.”

Fleetwood Car Centre, in Copse Road, is just one local business suffering the effects of the vandalism.

John Evans, partner owner at the car showroom, said: “Two windows in the main showroom have been damaged.

“It happened overnight, we came in one morning and saw a hole in one of the windows. It will cost about £1,500 to repair. We are a local business, employing local people and vandalism like this is being done by local people, it’s not good.

“It’s lucky no one was in the building at the time.”

Vehicles and properties have been targeted in the sporadic attacks which police say have no particular pattern in terms of timing and area.

However, they have mostly occurred in Fleetwood, with some attacks in Thornton.

“At first, we thought a BB gun was being used, but because of the size of ball bearings being used, it’s more likely to be a catapult,” said Sgt Sanderson.

“A ball bearing fired from a catapult is powerful enough to break the outer pane of glass on a double-glazed window.

“We really are encouraging people to get in touch to track down those responsible.”

Police believe the culprits are travelling around in a car and randomly firing at properties. It is thought the incidents all took place under cover of darkness.

They have been reported on Addison Road, St John Avenue, Broadwater, Larkholme Parade and Lord Street.

Ivor Bould, chairman of Fleetwood Neighbourhood Watch said: “It’s absolutely unacceptable. What if it gets somebody in the eye?

“It’s kids getting up to no good and parents should be made responsible for their children. Crime is on the up and its because of all the cuts.”

PC Vicki Merrill, of Fleetwood Police, said: “There’s no particular pattern, and both residential and commercial properties have been targeted.

“The first incident happened in November and there have been 16 in total.

“It is dangerous, and we are taking it seriously.”

“At the moment we are making investigations and checking CCTV in local streets,” said PC Merrill.

“If anyone has any information please contact us on 101.”