A drugs den which left neighbours feeling “on edge”, “scared to leave their own homes” and sleep deprived has been shut down.
Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council, in partnership with Cleveland Police and Accent Housing, secured a closure order on 91 Wembley Way, Stockton today (6 October).
The order means the tenant – Peter Duckling, aged 38 – must not enter the property and it will be inaccessible to anyone for three months.
The property is now boarded up and if anyone tries to enter, they will be prosecuted.
Teesside Magistrates’ Court heard details of a series of complaints relating to incidents that have taken place at the property since February.
The majority of the complaints relate to drug dealing and drug use, a constant flow of visitors by car, taxi and on foot at all hours, physical assaults and verbal abuse, the court was told. In one incident in September a man was seen producing a large knife.
Councillor Steve Nelson, Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council’s Cabinet Member for Access, Communities and Community Safety, said: “Nobody should feel scared in their own home but the activities of this tenant and his associates left innocent people living in extreme fear and anxiety. Such behaviour will simply not be tolerated.
“We have worked very hard with Cleveland Police to take action and I’m pleased the closure order will bring an end to months of distress. I’d also like to thank our Civic Enforcement Officers and ward councillors whose efforts to gather necessary evidence helped us secure this order.”
Stockton Neighbourhood Team T/Chief Inspector Jon Hagen said: “The outcome of today is a great example of a partnership approach to tackling criminal activity.
“We will continue to work with residents across the Force area to address issues of crime, antisocial behaviour and drug dealing which affect our local communities.
“The Force will also continue to work with partners to take robust action against anyone who persists in taking part or allowing such activity to take place spoiling the quality of life for the law-abiding majority.”