A TEENAGE boy was arrested after a man was assaulted in New Milton town centre on Saturday evening, and a local PCSO slammed the “selfish morons” responsible for related disturbances.
The alarm was raised shortly before 6pm, with reports of an altercation and anti-social behaviour in Station Road.
Paramedics responded along with police, and a 29-year-old man was taken by ambulance to Southampton General Hospital with what were described by police as “minor facial injuries”.
Detained on suspicion of assault, a 16-year-old from Bournemouth was later released under investigation.
The scene was cordoned off between Barclays bank and the Anglo Asian Food & Wine off-licence on Saturday evening while investigations were carried out.
Officers also had to put a dispersal order in place in response to anti-social behaviour resulting from the assault. This allowed them to clear groups of people from areas surrounding Station Road for the rest of the weekend.
Posting on social media, area PCSO Alan McCaffery hit out at the offenders who caused the disorder.
He wrote: “For those of you who suffered alarm and distress as a result of this behaviour I will apologise on behalf of those responsible, albeit I will not hold back, and openly say that these people are selfish morons putting others at risk and will be dealt with robustly going forward if a repeat performance is encountered.”
Residents shared their shock at what had happened in the high street on Facebook.
One person wrote: “I saw a man on the floor with police around him outside the cashpoint. Looks to be that he has cut open his head.”
A force spokesperson said today (Monday): “We were called to reports of an altercation and anti-social behaviour on Saturday 26th September at 5.53pm on Station Road, New Milton.
“Following an assault, a 29-year-old man was taken to Southampton General Hospital after suffering minor facial injuries.
“A 16-year-old boy from Bournemouth was arrested on suspicion of assault and released under investigation pending further enquiries.”
The spokesperson added: “A dispersal order was also put in place in the surrounding areas of Station Road – from Saturday evening until 7am this morning (28th September) – giving police officers the powers to disperse groups of people out of those areas in relation to the associated anti-social behaviour caused by the incident.”
PCSO McCaffery also hit out at a “small minority” of teens and adults who refused to wear masks in New Milton shops.
He said that while on patrol in the town last Friday night he encountered “hostility and open disregard for order in a time when all of us are having to sacrifice so much”.
PCSO McCaffery warned that those who flout the rules risk a £200 fine.