Body cams help catch young troublemakers at Dundee Asda

Security staff at a Dundee supermarket are donning body cameras at night to identify young troublemakers.

Community wardens loaned two cameras to the Asda Kirkton store following a “significant increase” in calls to police about youths causing annoyance.

The details are included in a new report by city council chief executive David Dorward into the work of Dundee’s Community Safety Hub, which was set up 18 months ago.

Mr Dorward said: “At a meeting between Asda staff, police and community safety representatives an action plan was devised which would help Asda deal with the issues with the support from the police and community safety (CS) wardens.

“The CS wardens agreed to lend Asda security staff two body-worn cameras on a short-term loan, to film incidents which could help to identify the young people involved.

“From the resultant footage police and CS wardens identified a number of the young people who were known to be causing issues throughout the area.

“Anti-social behaviour (ASB) team youth officers and police officers visited them and issued warnings.”

Staff have since built good relationships with the youngsters by holding football sessions, helping repaint their graffiti wall, and providing lighting for the pitch and youth shelter at the back of the store.

Mr Dorward added: “After four weeks of identifying the young people and working together with police, ASB team, CS wardens, youth work team and Asda staff, youth calls fell significantly.

“Building positive relationships with the young people and keeping them informed of plans has proved to be successful.”

This year, the hub which brings together a number of council and other agencies, including blue light services aims to tackle noise complaints. City councillors are being asked to approve plans to establish an anti-social behaviour noise group to “research and analyse the underlying associated issues and produce an action plan designed to further reduce the number of noise complaints”.

The hub has had involvement in various other incidents in the last year including tackling hate crimes, bullying, support for elderly theft victims, community support following a murder and information sharing which saw the arrest of a “dangerous, wanted criminal” in September.

Mr Dorward’s report goes before the council’s policy and resources committee for police, fire and community safety on Monday.