Man from Wood Green jailed after spate of harassment in St Albans

A police car bonnet reading "police".

During one incident, the man stood next to a child playing in a sandpit. - Credit: Harry Rutter

A man from north London has been jailed for harassment following a number of incidents in Hertfordshire.

Police in Hertfordshire received a number of reports on Wednesday, July 6, and Thursday, July 7, about a man approaching families with children in St Albans.

Officers heard that Mohammed Khan, aged 25, had attempted to engage the families and children in conversation.

During one incident, he repeatedly followed a man carrying his young child around St Albans city centre, asking questions for 25 minutes.

In Victoria Playing Field, off Verulam Road, Khan entered a play area and stood next to a child who was playing in a sandpit.

Officers from Hertfordshire Constabulary attended and arrested the man, before charging him with harassment without violence.

Khan appeared at Stevenage Magistrates' Court on Thursday, July 21, where he was sentenced to 10 weeks in jail.

He previously pleaded guilty to the charge.

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The man, from Mayes Road in Wood Green, Haringey, was also given a three-year Criminal Behaviour Order (CBO).

As part of his CBO, he must not to enter or remain in sight of any public parks, children’s play area, children’s swimming area or any area predominantly used for children’s activities, and he must not to speak to any children.

Khan can be arrested if he breaches any of these conditions.

DC Adam Haines, of Hertfordshire Constabulary, said: "Khan’s behaviour caused a great deal of concern among the local community and officers worked quickly to make an arrest and investigate the circumstances around what had happened.

"I want to thank all those who did exactly the right thing by contacting police straight away to report their concerns.

"Thankfully it was determined that no kidnap attempts were made, but the behaviour was still extremely inappropriate and caused a great deal of distress.

"We’re pleased that we were able to secure a jail sentence and that a CBO has also been granted."