A Lincoln man has been ordered to pay £570 for breaching the city’s Public Space Protection Order (PSPO) when he refused to surrender alcohol.
This was the third successful prosecution following the introduction of the order and the first relating to alcohol offences.
It follows the first two cases to be heard in court for breaching the PSPO - which bans the public consumption of New Psychoactive Substances, more commonly known as ‘legal highs’ - which took place last month and were both successful.
Andrew McInnes, 43, of Chatterton Avenue, did not attend the hearing at Lincoln Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday, August 5, but in his absence was found guilty and given a £200 fine and ordered to pay £200 costs, a victims’ surcharge of £20 and £150 Criminal Courts Charge.
Magistrates heard that on Friday, May 8, a council officer accompanied by a police officer attended the New Life Church, in Newland, to serve McInnes with papers relating to a separate prosecution.
McInnes smelt strongly of alcohol and the police officer could see bottles of cider in a carrier bag, which he asked McInnes to surrender, the court heard. McInnes handed over an open bottle but refused to surrender the sealed bottle.
Sam Barstow, Service Manager for Public Protection and Anti-Social Behaviour at City of Lincoln Council, said: “It is pleasing that the court has once again backed our use of a PSPO to tackle issues in Lincoln city centre related to substance misuse.
“McInnes is well known to council officers and we have been working hard to try to ensure he receives the help and support that he needs. Sadly this can often be unsuccessful and in order to protect people from becoming a victim due to his behaviour, legal action is sometimes necessary.
“The council and its partners will continue to work with McInnes to try to improve outcomes but it is also key that we ensure we provide protection for others within the city at the same time.
“In our consultation to bring in this order, it was clear the public supported the need to tackle on-street drinking and we are working hard to ensure we see a positive impact in our city centre.”
In April, City of Lincoln Council became the first authority in the country to introduce a PSPO banning the public consumption of New Psychoactive Substances (NPS) in the city centre, in a bid to tackle the anti-social behaviour they cause.
The first two people to be prosecuted for ignoring the city’s ‘legal highs’ ban were last month ordered to pay a total of £720 at Lincoln Magistrates’ Court.