THE boss of Cleveland Police arrested a man, banned from a shopping centre for "terrorising" customers, after he broke his injunction and was discovered there.

Earlier this week, Neil Michael Plews, also known as 'Plewsy' was handed a three-year ban by Magistrates after a spate of crimes includng fires, rubbish, swearing, making threats and agressively begging, were attributed to him. 

Plews of no-fixed-address was banned by Teesside Magistrates' Court from going anywhere near Hemlington Viewley Centre in Middlesbrough and surrounding residential areas for a three-year period.

But just one day later, Plews was spotted by a PCSO and Chief Constable Richard Lewis who were on patrol, in breach of his injunction in the shopping centre. 

Chief Constable Lewis said: "After launching our recent public consultation on Neighbourhood Policing, I spent some time working on the front line with our brilliant PCSOs.

"In the course of a shift my colleague pointed out an individual who was committing an offence and I simply arrested him. I would not ask my staff to do anything that I wouldn't do myself."

The PCSO had spotted Plews in the Viewley shopping centre, where he was forbidden to return, before Chief Constable Lewis used his powers of arrest to apprehend the man.

Chief Constable Lewis added: "It is important that senior leaders understand what life is like in communities and with front line staff which is why patrolling with them and speaking directly with communities is so important to me."

The following day, Plews appeared at Teesside Magistrates' Court again where he pleaded guilty to breaching the injunction.

But as Plews had spent 24 hours in custody, the district judge in the case chose not to sentence him further. 

In response, Middlesbrough Mayor Andy Preston said: "I'm a huge fan of Richard Lewis and the fact he was out on patrol in an area that has issues around anti-social behaviour I think is great.

"As for the other guy, I feel really sorry for him, he is obviously a troubled individual - nobody would sensibly choose that lifestyle but we have to protect the public."