Following on from last week’s interview with the Licensing team, we followed them on a night in Hull to see them in action.
Joining the Licensing officers and patrol teams was passive drugs dog Roscoe and his handler. This two-day operation in Hull was the first of its kind in our area in five years.
The plan was to check venues in the University, Avenues and city centre areas and work with those venues to ensure they were abiding by their license conditions.
The Licensing officers had been keen to tell us about how they have fostered relationships with door staff, and this was evident at our first stop on Cottingham Road. The Licensing officers explained what we were doing and we were welcomed in to conduct searches.
When Roscoe indicated a presence of drugs in any venue or on any person, stop and searches were conducted. During the two-day operation 33 searches were conducted with a substantial amount of drugs found, including three bags of cocaine and three bags of crack on one person, who was arrested.
As expected on an evening shift, there were some issues. Within moments, Roscoe sniffed suspicious scents, with those in possession dealt with accordingly. It was remarkable to see how quickly some people left venues at the sight of a drugs dog.
One thing Roscoe wasn’t needed for was to detect people who had had too much to drink. One person unleashed a volley of expletive-laden abuse at officers, while another fell out of the toilets before he was, erm, suitably dressed.
In the main though, the response was cordial, with door staff, license holders and revellers pleased to see a visible presence. As officers entered one venue, they were greeted to the DJ playing KRS-One’s Sound of da Police. It could have been much worse…