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New crime scheme for Yarmouth

PUBLISHED: 18:04 15 April 2010 | UPDATED: 09:44 02 July 2010

Yarmouth Mayor, Tony Smith opens a new Victim support unit for youngsters. David Applegate (young crime victim)  Tony Smith (centre) and Kara Shingleton (young victims of crime development officer).

Yarmouth Mayor, Tony Smith opens a new Victim support unit for youngsters. David Applegate (young crime victim) Tony Smith (centre) and Kara Shingleton (young victims of crime development officer).

A pioneering initiative was launched yesterday in Great Yarmouth to help the shocking number of young people falling victim to crime in the age of iPods and trendy mobile phones.

A pioneering initiative was launched yesterday in Great Yarmouth to help the shocking number of young people falling victim to crime in the age of iPods and trendy mobile phones.

Victim Support Norfolk has spent more than £20,000 redeveloping its centre in Market Row to create a relaxed “young persons” zone” with bean bags and a television area.

As well as being used for one-to-one interviews and a Wednesday drop-in session, the room will be the venue for creative music workshops designed to boost self-esteem. Young crime victims will continue to be offered activity breaks to Hilltop in Sheringham under an existing project.

The scheme, being led by young victims of crime development officer Kara Shingleton, is the first in the country to be piloted by the Victim Support charity.

Miss Shingleton said: “Young people today do have things people want. In terms of crimes committed by over-25s on young people, they often relate to iPods, phones and other trendy gadgets. Young people are also increasingly carrying a fair bit of money.”

Her assistant, David Applegate, 20, who was himself the victim of a violent assault when he was coming home from school at the age of 16, said the aim of the new scheme was to boost the confidence of young crime victims and help them interact normally again with people their age.

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