A COLCHESTER councillor has expressed concerns for the city’s policing following a delinquent group’s anti-social behaviour.

The troublemakers are claimed to have trashed the upper floor of a High Street restaurant and vandalised greenery in Red Lion Yard.

Other reports include the tearaways throwing glass bottles at people in High Street and abusing shop workers and business owners.

Councillor Mike Lilley, who represents Old Heath and the Hythe, said: “I’m quite astonished this is allowed to happen in the town considering the police commissioner and police said we have had numbers increase in Essex and Colchester.

“We expected a reduction in crime rate and to see more police around.”

Gazette: Concerned - Councillor Mike LilleyConcerned - Councillor Mike Lilley (Image: Newsquest)

He added: “I’m concerned and have been for some time that police haven’t had their priorities right.

"Low level crime might not be high on police priorities, but it affects residents, tourists, shopkeepers, everybody.

"If we have a got a lot more officers that the government boasts about, I want to see them on the street and stopping these people.

“The police should tell us their plans for the future to stop it from happening.

“Police should change priorities and listen to what people want as priorities. We all know sexual crime is a high priority for the police – so is protecting shops, owners and people who use the town.

“If we have more police officers than we’ve ever had before, where are they? Why is the crime rate rising in Colchester?”

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Chief Insp Colin Cox, district commander for Colchester, said residents have his “commitment” that the issue will be tackled.

“We will ensure we continue to maintain a visible police presence in any areas where reports of such behaviour persist.”