Police reject report of girls being followed by refugees in Catterick Garrison

Police have appealed for calm and have stated that a report of girls being followed by refugees was inaccurate.

Yesterday a claim was made on Facebook that a group of girls had been followed and harassed by a group of Syrian refugees in Catterick Garrison.

It was claimed the men were aged 20 to 30.

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The post on Facebook attracted a large number of comments from concerned parents who were worried about the safety of their own children.

A number of derogatory comments against refugees were made by those commenting. Threats of violence were also made.

However, police have now issued a statement urging calm and advising that the incident was not as described on social media.

North Yorkshire Police say they were called to an incident at Tesco in Catterick Garrison at around 2.30pm on Saturday which was reported by security staff at the store.

A police spokesperson said: “This incident involved a group of men and a group of girls, all local to the Catterick area.

“It was reported to the police that a group of Middle Eastern men had “chased a group of young girls into Tesco” and security staff were called to intervene.

“Police officers attended and carried out an investigation into the matter.”

Police said they have now spoken to all parties involved and have viewed clear CCTV footage.

“This CCTV supports a version of events where the group of men were shopping in Tesco when the girls approached them and began taking photos of them,” the spokesperson added.

“The men asked them to stop taking the photos and to delete them, then security staff quickly intervened.

“Officers are aware of what could be described as inflammatory comments on social media and have reiterated that the incident is not as reported.”

Police say they are appealing to members of the public to stay calm, to think carefully and not post any racist, inflammatory or antagonistic comments.