POLICE have moved to head off emerging concerns that graffiti in Dromore might be evidence of a burgeoning local drug culture.
An admittedly small number of Dromore residents - claiming, however, that their concerns were widely shared - contacted The Leader to voice fears over a scattering of drugs-related graffiti in town.
None of the individuals wanted to be named.
“It’s not all to be found in the park, but there’s a fair bit of it there,” said one. “There’s marijuana plants and the like sprayed on walls and stones and up under the bridge at the viaduct end there was a load of stuff about dopers and smoking weed, but it seems to have been painted over now.”
“I know you’ll find drugs just about anywhere you go,” said another, “but a lot of people I know feel the same, that you can’t help but wonder if all this drugs graffiti doesn’t mean Dromore has something to be worried about.”
A third added, “It’s bad enough with all the vandalism there’s been in the park in the past, the drinking, the broken glass and the crowds of young ones giving dog’s abuse to mothers with wee kids, but are they turning it into a drugs den now too?”
Not according to local police, who don’t appear to consider the graffiti to be of any great significance except in terms of criminal damage, and believe most residents will see them for the “mindless scrawlings” they are.
A spokesperson said, “The Neighbourhood Policing Team in Dromore are aware of graffiti depicting cannabis leaves. The team are confident that the vast majority of residents in Dromore understand that mindless scrawlings of this nature are not indicative of the day to day issues in the town.
“Officers meet regularly with residents of Dromore to discuss their concerns and priorities and work together, on an ongoing basis, with the local community and partner agencies to address these.
“Defacing public property can amount to criminal damage and police would appeal to anyone with information to contact them on 0845 600 8000.
“If you have concerns about antisocial or criminal activity in the Dromore area you can contact Dromore Neighbourhood Policing Team on 0845 600 8000 or by emailing NPTDromore@psni.pnn.police.uk.”