The St James's Street Community Action Group recently met with the Police & Crime Commissioner Katy Bourne to complain about the rise in drug dealing and begging in the area with one saying that "lawlessness" was "out of control".
Some business owners described how drug use around St James’s Street is blatant and it was not uncommon to find needles, urine and faeces on their doorsteps first thing in the morning.
Katy Bourne has raised the issues with the Chief Constable Giles York who is aware of problems in the area and there is some hope that the rise in police precept in council tax will give scope for extra resources. For instance the top 12 beggars, who are thought to be part of a gang, are being proactively targeted.
Police also have new legislation to target drug dealers, and the Commissioner said that Sussex was one of the first forces to use new powers to block suspected dealers’ mobile phones. to counteract County Lines drug dealing.