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Police with tasers called to a 14th birthday party
POLICE armed with tasers were called to a Southend estate after knife-wielding teenagers caused chaos at a 14th birthday party.
Officers swarmed on to the Woodgrange Estate to control 40 teenagers who had run amok after tensions bubbled over at a birthday party for Keeley Lee, at Windmill Steps.
Shocked residents summoned help after youngsters at the party torched a balcony, kicked in a neighbour’s front door, and made threats to kill each other.
Keeley’s mother, Sue Sutheran, 46, was present at the party and confronted the teenagers when she realised her purse had been stolen.
She said: “I told them no one was leaving until everyone had been searched. That’s when they started kicking off.
“My daughter was screaming because I ended up in the street surrounded by these people who had nicked my carving knives.”
As the trouble brewed, messages started to fly on social networking site Facebook, drawing more teenagers to the area.
Mrs Sutheran claimed she was thrown down some stairs and her 16-year-old daughter, Paige, punched in the ribs during the ensuing fight.
The family also had jewellery stolen as well as £60, which was meant as a wedding fund for her son, Shane Sutheran, 23, and his fiancee.
Even some baby photographs went missing from a purse. They have also had to have the locks changed as a set of keys went missing, Mrs Sutheran said: “My neighbour’s door was kicked clean off it’s hinges. I’ve got bruises on my arms and my daughter, Paige, has a swollen side and swollen hand.
“One of them even squared up to my future daughter-in-law’s face and said he was going to post her body parts to her boyfriend.”
Police said they had initially been called at about 9.30pm, on Friday, by a concerned neighbour who thought a party was getting out of hand.
As they were en route, they were told things had calmed down and they were not needed.
Just after midnight, they began to receive a flurry of calls and sent at least five patrol cars backed by a taser unit.
Insp Matt Bennett, of Southend police, said they were trying to get to the bottom of what happened.
He said: “We did attend and as a result there are numerous enquiries to follow up, that will be quite time consuming.
“Nevertheless, we will get to the bottom of what happened and deal appropriately with our findings.”
An Essex Police spokeswoman added: “Essex Police is examining the force’s initial response to this incident to make sure no early opportunities were missed.”
Officers managed to disperse the group, but will now be taking statements and viewing CCTV, before arrests are made.
Anyone with information should call Southend police on 101.
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